The Midway JV boys secured a second place spot in the Tri-County Conference after Friday’s 3-point win over James Kenan, then strengthened that position Tuesday with a home win against county rival Union, 59-42.
Both teams play their final games of the season Friday, with Midway traveling to Hobbton and Union hosting Lakewood.
But Tuesday it was Raider blue and Spartan red on the court as the two JV teams tangled in a hard-fought game that, both coaches acknowledged came down to two good runs by Midway, one in the second quarter and the other in the fourth and final frame.
“I want to congratulate coach (Matthew) Creech and his Raiders for a great, competitive game. They are playing really good basketball right now,” Union coach Bryant Register said.
Creech was just as complimentary of Register and his squad, saying the JV Spartans were well-prepared. “Coach Register is a quality guy and I love going up against him and his Spartans,” Creech said. “They came out playing well and jumped on us from the start. We were fortunate to make key runs in the second and fourth quarter to give us a little distance.”
Register agreed. “The second quarter really hurt us. Their press bothered us and they had a run. Then in the fourth quarter, they had another good run that put it out of reach for us.”
The teams played back and forth basketball in the opening minutes, with Union going ahead at the end of the first quarter 14-11.
Then came Midway’s first run, giving the Raiders a comfortable 28-19 margin as they headed into the half.
Union tried to turn it around in the third, slowly digging themselves out of the earlier deficit. By quarter’s end, they’d cut the lead to 43-33.
Then came the second Raider run, a more significant one that eventually lead to the Midway win.
“I was proud of our guys tonight,” Creech said. “It was our senior night, so I started our sophomores and they did a good job for us.”
Colin Warren drew 3 charges and scored 10 points; Jamarrious Baggett had 11 points; Tyler Mayes scored 8 points; and Cameron Hobbs added 3 points. All four sophomores, Creech said, would move up next year to the Raider varsity.
Also scoring for Midway was Jackson Carr with 10 points and Ayden Canady with 9 points.
“I was proud of all nine of our guys who played tonight,” Creech said, stressing how well his team has played as the season progressed.
“We’ve won eight out of our last nine games. I just hope we can keep the streak going when we visit Hobbton Friday.”
Register praised his Union JV, saying that he was proud of the way they competed against the Raiders.
“We fought hard and we competed and I was very proud of that,” Register said.
Christian Boykin led scoring for Union with 14 points. Also scoring were Brandon Johnson, 6; Jamar Newkirk,6; Jawan Newkirk, 5; Shyquan Newkirk, 5; Devin Henry, 3; and JaVonte Henry, 3.
Union’s record moves to 5-14 overall and 3-10 in conference play.
Midway is 16-6 overall and 8-5 in conference.