Memorial, Sabine Pass playoff success continues with Tuesday night wins

Published 12:28 am Wednesday, February 28, 2024

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Another year, another regional championship round appearance for Memorial High School.

In 2023, it was the Titans defeating Sterling High School by a 63-46 count.

It was a similar story this year, as Memorial traveled to the Bill Near Center Sports Complex Tuesday night to battle the Galveston Ball Golden Tornadoes.

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The Titans controlled the game en route to a 50-38 victory.

With the win, Memorial advances to play Ellison High School. Ellison picked up a 65-54 Tuesday night win over Belton.

The Eagles (32-5) have won 14 consecutive games by an average of more than 25 points since their last loss — a 67-56 defeat at Shoemaker on Jan. 5.

In other Port Arthur playoff action, Sabine Pass High School advances to the fourth round of playoff action following a Tuesday night win.

Coach Christian Stewart and the Sharks topped the Thorndale High School Bulldogs by a score of 44-39.

Earlier this week, Stewart told Port Arthur Newsmedia he was looking to emulate the program success that Thorndale has built over time. If this week’s performance is any indication, the Sharks are working their way there.

Additional coverage

By James Lacombe of The Galveston County Daily News (reprinted with permission)

A red-hot end to the first half helped lift the Port Arthur Memorial Titans to a 50-38 win over the Ball High Tors in Tuesday night’s Region III-5A boys basketball quarterfinal playoff game at the Bill Neal Center.

Despite a rough start offensively for the Tors in a first quarter where they had eight turnovers and didn’t score a field goal until the 2:05 mark of the period, a strong defense kept them in the game, trailing just 7-5 going into the second quarter.

Ahead 12-10 at the 5:48 mark of the second frame, the Titans — who led wire-to-wire in the contest — closed the first half on a game-altering 15-2 run capped by a 3-pointer from Hayden Underwood to take a commanding 27-12 lead into the halftime intermission.

Ball High kept battling to keep the game from getting out of hand, but only got as close as a 27-17 deficit in the second half. However, the Tors’ five straight points to start the second half were answered by an 11-3 run from Memorial to end the third quarter with a 38-20 lead.

A dunk from Kendall Hilstock gave the Titans their largest lead of the game at 48-28 with 2:51 remaining before the Tors were able to close the gap some ahead of the final buzzer.

A balanced scoring effort for Memorial — which advances to the regional semifinals for a matchup against Ellison at 7:30 p.m. Friday at the Berry Center — was led by Amir Young with 11 points and nine points apiece from Underwood and Davin Mercer. Geoffrey Morris was the Titans’ top rebounder with seven boards.

Leading Ball High in scoring was Taj Petteway with 20 points to go along with eight rebounds. Saiaiki Jones and London Deyon each chipped in six points. Phoenix Pope was the Tors’ leading rebounder with 10 boards.