by RENALDO DORSETT
The CC Sweeting Cobras made an early statement to the remainder of the Government School Secondary Sports Association Senior Boys basketball league as they dominated an eagerly anticipated early season matchup against the defending GSSSA and Hugh Campbell runners up.
Jamaal Simon led the Cobras with a game high 21 points in their 94-64 route over the Dame Doris Johnson Mystic Marlins last night at the CI Gibson Gymnasium.
Simon shot 8-9 from the field, 5-6 from the free throw line and added six rebounds.
“We executed on defence and offence and we just came on the court to perform and this is what happens. It felt like last year, we were beating them all last season and they came at the end and beat us,” Simon said, “We cant celebrate too early, we cant’t celebrate until the big dance is here and when that comes we know we’ll see them again.”
A balanced scoring attack saw six Cobras reach double figures in scoring.
Adrian Thompson finished with 13 points and 11 rebounds, Corey Sands finished with 16 points and four steals, two-sport star and high jump specialist Ken Mullings finished with 18 points and eight rebounds, Derontae Brown added 10 points and five assists while Lorenzo Riley chipped in with 11.
Brendon Stubbs led the Mystic Marlins with 18 points, Kyle Turnquest finished with 13 points, while Game Atilus added 10 points and 12 rebounds.
The Mystic Marlins kept pace early, but the Cobras edge on the boards and up temp style of play eventually wore them down as the broke toward a blowout in the third quarter.
Head coach Mario Bowleg said the quicker pace of the game is a fundamental advantage he feels his team has over many others.
“That’s all we practice, transition defence, transition offence. We feel as though we are very athletic and we have a deep bench talent wise, so we feel that once we go out there and we run up and down the basketball court in a systematic way, and we play that pressure defence for 32 minutes, we feel that by the second or third quarter most teams will probably die off and it’ll open up the lanes. They are still one of the teams, if not the team to beat, we were just the better team tonight,” he said, The coaching staff and the team is very confident and as the season progresses we are going to get better and at the end of the day we feel as though we are going to be the team to beat.”
The Cobras out rebounded the Mystic Marlins 42-34 and that fast break attack led to 60 percent shooting from the field.
CC Sweeting closed the first quarter on a 7-1 run to take a 19-8 lead.
In the second, the Mystic Marlins’ outside shooting sparked a rally when Lennix Moss and Rodrick Pinder made back to back threes and the lead was trimmed to two, 22-20.
The Cobras responded with a run of their own, and Simon fave them their first lead of double figures when he finished a three point play to make the score 31-20 with 2;45 left to play in the half.
CC Sweeting led 35-26 headed into the half and outscored the Mystic Marlins 19-15 in the period to take a 64-41 lead into the fourth.
Both teams are now on a break from league play until the new year.
When play resumes January 6, CC Sweeting will face the CR Walker Knights at the DW Davis Gymnasium while the Mystic Marlins will face the CI Gibson Rattlers in a GSSSA championship rematch at the AF Adderley Gymnasium.