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Comets rout NERMS for tournament title

Stephanie King

Saturday night the middle school boys basketball season came to an end as the Comets of SAMS battle it out with the Huskies of NERMS in the tournament championship. SAMS entered as the number one seed with a 14-2 overall record, while the Huskies came in as the three seed with a 12-4 overall record.

Hakeem Butler put the Comets on the board early with a fastbreak lay-in. Zander Cheek answered on the other end for the Huskies with a bucket in the post before Josh Meadows muscled his way in for the score down low for the Comets. Another bucket from Cheek tied the game at four all. SAMS took a one-point lead off a free throw from Meadows, but Chase Whitaker knocked down a jumper to give the Huskies their first lead of the night.

A free throw from Butler and Tanner Marsh put the Comets back in front 7-6 before another bucket from Whitaker gave the lead back to the Huskies. Butler and Marsh scored back to back buckets to give the Comets an 11-8 lead late in the quarter. A floater from Zane Cheek cut the lead to one for the Huskies with under one minute to play. Meadows scored at the buzzer to give the Comets a 13-10 lead heading into the second quarter.

It was all SAMS in the second quarter as they outscored the Huskies 20-1. SAMS scored fourteen unanswered for the Huskies scored their only point of the quarter. Butler, Marsh, and Meadows were key during the run as they game the Comets a 27-10 lead before the Huskies added a free throw from Karson Bowman. SAMS closed out the quarter with back to back threes including a deep three at the buzzer from Kobe Sandoval. At the half, SAMS was in control 33-11.

Zander Cheek and Whitaker got the Huskies going early in the third quarter as they scored back to back buckets to cut the lead to eighteen. Butler extended the Comets’ lead back to twenty with a strong drive to the hoop. A putback from Meadows pushed the lead out further before Zander Cheek knocked down a pair at the line. Calvin Smith scored his first points of the night to give the Comets a 39-17 lead over the Huskies. Zane Cheek went one for two at the line to cut the lead to twenty-one before the Comets answered with a 6-0 run behind Marsh and Meadows. NERMS closed out the quarter on a 4-0 run. After three complete quarters, SAMS led 45-22.

The fourth quarter got off to a slow start, but soon both teams began to pick up the pace. SAMS led 48-23 when NERMS got back to back buckets from Whitaker and Bowman. Sandoval went one for two at the line to give the Comets a 49-27 lead. After a free throw from Zane Cheek, the Comets closed out the game with a 7-0 run including a fastbreak layin from J. Timmons. SAMS got the win 56-29 and takes home to the middle school tournament title.

Hakeem Butler paced the Comets with 15 points, while Tanner Marsh and Josh Meadows each finished with 12 points. Kobe Sandoval added 10 for the Comets. For NERMS, Chase Whitaker led the way with 9 points. Zander Cheek finished with 8 points and Zane Cheek chipped in 7.

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