The varsity basketball teams from Farmville Central rolled to victory Tuesday night against North Lenoir in both teams’ season openers.
The Jaguar boys, the defending 2A state champions, used defensive pressure to pour it on in the second quarter on their way to an 87-37 victory over the Hawks in the nightcap.
The Jaguars girls, last year’s Class 2A state runner-up, overcame a turnover-plagued first half but took the lead in the third quarter and never looked back en route to a 70-49 triumph.
In the varsity boys’ contest, Farmville Central led from the outset, and the closest North Lenoir could get was a single point on three occasions in the first quarter.
Jayden Pitt tallied eight points in the first quarter as the Jaguars built a 19-8 advantage.
The home team then turned up the pressure defensively in the second stanza, forcing numerous turnovers which led to numerous run-outs.
The points came in bunches – FC would score six or eight in a row, the Hawks would get a basket or free throws, and the Jags would respond with dunks (two from Jah Short, who finished with 10 points), jump shots (Alex Moye), 3-pointers (Pitt, Brandon Knight. M.J. Williams and Chris Rhodes) and free throws (Pitt and Short).
The result? A 30-point second quarter that saw Farmville Central take a 52-17 lead.
North Lenoir was able to score early in the third quarter, but eventually, FC put together an 11-4 run (Derrick Cox, Williams and Pitt) to extend the lead to 40 (74-34) with 1:48 left in the quarter. That necessitated the continuous clock the rest of the way.
Cox, Knight and J.D. Donnell tallied points in the fourth quarter to complete the lopsided win.
Pitt led Farmville Central with 25 points while Cox added 15, Williams 11 and Short 10.
Jaylen Hill’s eight points paced North Lenoir.
Despite a sloppy first half which saw Farmville Central suffer through 17 turnovers and trail 29-27 at halftime, the Jaguars outscored the Hawks 21-8 over the final 5:37 of the third quarter and pulled away for the victory behind 27 points from Amiya Joyner, 13 from Janisja Carmon and 12 from Kalyn Baker.
Joyner kept the home team in it with 13 points in the second stanza.
The Jaguars cut down on turnovers, rebounded better and converted more consistently in the second half.
A three-point play from Baker gave the Jaguars the lead for good, 34-33, with 4:29 left in the third quarter. From there, Carmon (eight points), Destiny May (3-pointer) and Joyner (five points) took over as FC built a 10-point lead going into the fourth quarter.
Joyner capped off her solid performance with nine of her team’s 21 fourth-quarter points.
GIRLS’ BASKETBALL North Pitt 66, James Kenan 16
The Panthers won big on opening night with three players in double-digit points.
Kenae Edwards had a team-high 18, followed by Zamareya Jones with 13 and Zykheia Staton with 10.
North Pitt (1-0) is back in action on Saturday when it takes on Terry Sanford in Fayetteville as part of the Hoops and Dreams tournament.
John Paul II 51 Pungo Christian Academy 36
Sophomore Ramsey Cureton amassed 23 points, nine rebounds, four steals, and a block as JP2 cruised in the Pungo tip-off tournament, where the Saints finished 2-0 on Friday and Saturday.
Fellow sophomores Briia Elliott (eight points) and Chrissy Cox (nine rebounds) also enjoyed strong games.
John Paull II 62 Terra Ceia 29
Eleven of the Saints’ 13 players contributed points in an easy win, led by junior center Dana Galinis and her 16 points, eight rebounds and 2 blocks.
Freshman Ariana Atkinson scored 13 and senior Destini Hunt had five steals and four rebounds.
BOYS’ BASKETBALL John Paul II 71 Pungo 52
Jude Wisman-Raven led the Saints with 25 points, and junior Tyler Nelson had 13 to lead the Saints boys.
Ten of the 13 Saints players scored at least a point in the win.
John Paul II 74 Terra Ceia 36
The Saints offense was once again led by Wisman-Raven who scored a season-high 36 points to give him 104 in four games.