Asheville Christian builds early lead to stop Polk Middle

Polk Middle's Qualon Sutton pivots for a look at the basket in Thursday's game.

A talented Asheville Christian did little Thursday to ease Polk County Middle’s growing pain.

Relying on crisp passing and its height advantage, ACA built a 15-point halftime lead and went on to hand the Wolverines a 39-21 setback in a Blue Ridge Middle School Conference battle at Polk.

Polk County Middle (1-6) trailed 22-7 at intermission, but nearly held its own with ACA in the second half. Qualon Sutton scored eight points and Lukas Tipton added seven as the Wolverines refused to go quietly into the night.

“We’re so young and have a lot of inexperience,” said Polk County Middle head coach John Rochford. “I’m proud of the way we finished.

“We’ve got to grow up a little bit, and it’s going to take some time. We’re looking to get better by the end of the season.”

Nate Henderson hit a short jumper with 4:48 left in the first period to make it 2-2. The Wolverines wouldn’t score again until the 4:45 mark of the second period when Henderson skied for a rebound and muscled in a shot to make it 12-4. But ACA closed the period with a 10-3 run to fashion its halftime lead.

Henderson finished with four points and Coby Lee added three for Polk, which travels to Brevard Middle on Monday.