Trojans down Polk
The Chase Trojans (5-1) placed four players in double figures as the dominated the paint in a 64-44 win over Polk County on the road Wednesday night.
The win comes less than 24 hours after Chase lost their first game of the season to Kings Mountain.
“I was really worried about how we would respond coming off of our first loss,” said coach Joe Jessen. “ But we played well especially on the inside and came away with a big win.”
Shad Blanton got Chase off on the right foot, burying a deep three-pointer out of the far corner.
Polk’s Alec Philpott answered with a deep three on the other end. The game continued to go back-and-forth until midway through the quarter.
With the game tied at 10-10, Chase’s Steven Holland took over in the paint. The lanky senior scored eight straight points, six of which came off offensive rebounds.
Tray Watkins finished the quarter with a backdoor layup as Chase led 20-10
Polk began to take advantage of the Chase zone to start the second quarter.
Alec Philpott was particularly effective canning four shots from distance in the frame.
Chase countered by continuing to dominate the paint with their size advantage. Holland connected on a foul line jumper while Watkins and Caleb Lancaster were a force on the offensive glass.
After a second straight put back by Lancaster late in the half, Chase had regained control at 30-22. Watkins was then fouled moments later at the buzzer but misfired on both foul shots leaving the score at 30-22.
Blanton found Watkins on a no look pass that resulted in an easy layup. The scoring pace slowed considerably as neither team found the bottom of the net until Polk’s Jaron Bontrang hit a three at the 4:13 mark.
Chase then went on 5-0 run capped by a Holland jumper. Blanton then hit a three and Holland garnered another short range jumper to push the Chase lead to 48-31 going into the fourth quarter.
The Trojans began to slowly expand that lead. Early in the quarter Lancaster scored six straight points to offset Jamal Tanner’s two three-pointers.
When Lancaster checked out, Watkins and Holland took his place, muscling their way inside for buckets.
Armed with a 17-point lead with 4:17 left, Chase went to a four corners offense.
Blanton melted away minutes every as Chase salted away the 64-44 win.
Holland led Chase with 21 points while Watkins and Lancaster had 14 and 10 points, respectively.
“Having four big men is a huge advantage,” said Jessen. “When one guy gets tired, somebody else can come in and keep pounding.”
Chase will take their inside game and put it to the test as they start conference play on Tuesday when they host Patton.
“Winning non-conference games are fun, but the real season starts on Tuesday”, said Jessen. “We have to get off on the right foot. Tuesday’s game will be huge.”