HENDERSONVILLE – Polk County boys basketball coach Antoni Staley walked out of the dressing room after Wednesday’s loss to Rosman, shook his head and exhaled.
Not much more needed to be said.
Rosman’s outside shooting and defensive effort quickly proved Polk County’s undoing, the Tigers using an explosive second quarter to pull away from Polk en route to a 72-36 win in the opening round of the Knights Christmas Tournament at North Henderson.
The Wolverines (1-8) will face Madison on Thursday at 1:45 p.m. in the consolation bracket. The Patriots suffered a 92-49 loss to North Henderson in their opening-round game.
Polk County trailed just 16-9 at the end of Wednesday’s opening quarter, but Rosman’s Deland Thomas, who had a game-high 26 points, drilled back-to-back 3-pointers to open the second period and the Tigers began to roll. Rosman (8-2) hit two more 3-pointers as part of a 16-2 run that gave the Tigers a 32-11 edge late in the quarter, the lead growing to 37-13 at the break.
The Wolverines got no closer than 22 points in the final two periods.
Sophomore Clark Phipps scored 19 points, 15 of those in the second half, to lead Polk County. Amir Gary had five points while Rustin Muse and Markell Lipscomb each had four points and Wyatt Derkach and Qualon Sutton each had two.
Leading scorer Dillon Overholt and senior guard Brandon Bacher will miss the tournament due to family obligations.
“The young guys played well,” Staley said. “Those three (Gary, Lipscomb and Sutton) and Clark did a good job.”
KNIGHTS CHRISTMAS TOURNAMENT
Wednesday’s First Round
East Henderson 72, Thomas Jefferson 51
Veritas Christian 57, Mitchell 53
Rosman 72, Polk County 36
North Henderson, 92, Madison 49
Thomas Jefferson vs. Mitchell, 11:15 a.m.
Polk County vs. Madison, 1:45 p.m.
East Henderson vs. Veritas Christian, 4:15 p.m.
Rosman vs. North Henderson, 6:45 p.m.