Make us your home page
Instagram

Get the quickest, smartest news, analysis and photos from the Bucs game emailed to you shortly after the final whistle.

(View our Privacy Policy)

Newsome boys take command in victory over Durant

PLANT CITY — For the first half of the season, it festered inside the collective underbelly of the Newsome Wolves, bulging mightily but never bursting through.

Finally, in a warm gym on a frigid night at Durant High, the Wolves — a trendy preseason pick as the county's top public school program — squeezed out that elusive signature win they knew they had in them.

Behind senior Jake Hodges' career-best 30 points, Newsome (9-5) never trailed en route to a 72-60 triumph against Durant that avenged a 15-point December defeat and snapped the Cougars' 10-game win streak.

"We lost about four close games over the winter (break)," said Hodges, whose team's previous close calls included a controversial one-point overtime loss to Sickles on Dec. 21. "We just wanted to come out with more intensity."

In a Class 5A, District 8 contest they had to have, the Wolves took a 22-10 lead on Hodges' 3-pointer and led 34-21 at the half. Hodges scored 11 in the second quarter, which ended with a 6-0 Wolves run after Durant had forced three consecutive turnovers.

"(Hodges) came out on a mission, and I think a lot of us did," Newsome coach Jon Mackey said. "We came out with a little better attitude, about playing up to our ability instead of just playing, and it showed."

Durant (10-2) staged a mild rally in the third, cutting its deficit to 45-41 on rangy junior Andre Nation's two free throws, but Nation (16 points) was whistled for his fourth foul less than a minute later.

Durant's top scorer (20.4 ppg) coming in, Nation fouled out with 6:42 to play and his team trailing by five. Durant, still a half-game ahead in the 5A-8 race with a 6-1 mark, never came any closer despite a 28-point night from senior guard Jeff Thomas.

Samal Shepherd scored 17 for Newsome (6-2 in district), including a transition dunk that increased the Wolves' lead to 68-58 and all but sealed things. Guard Jamel Gist scored eight of his 11 in the second period.

"It was kind of like we flip-flopped roles (from the first meeting)," Cougars coach Trent Tice said. "They were more aggressive, took it right at us."

Newsome72
Durant60

Newsome boys take command in victory over Durant 01/05/10 [Last modified: Tuesday, January 5, 2010 11:18pm]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times

    

Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

Loading...
  1. Cannon Fodder podcast: Bucs in a different place than the Jaguars right now

    Bucs

    Greg Auman recaps Thursday night's preseason game, a 12-8 win for the Bucs in Jacksonville, from Jameis Winston's strong first half with one play he'd like back to the defense dominating in the first half to …

    Jameis Winston attempts a pass during a preseason game against the Jaguars Thursday at EverBank Field in Jacksonville.  [Photo by Sam Greenwood/Getty Images]
  2. Bucs' Mike Evans motivated by deep ball that got away

    Bucs

    JACKSONVILLE — Bucs receiver Mike Evans had an efficient half of football Thursday night, with six balls thrown his way and five catches for 57 yards in Tampa Bay's 12-8 preseason win over the Jaguars.

    Bucs wide receiver Mike Evans (13) reaches for a pass as cornerback Ryan Smith (29) defends during training camp earlier this month at One Buccaneer Place in Tampa. [LOREN ELLIOTT   |   Times]
  3. Gerald McCoy: Bucs defense wanted to 'set the tone' vs. Jaguars

    Bucs

    JACKSONVILLE — The Bucs' starting defense held the Jaguars to a total of 1 rushing yard on 7 carries in the first half of Thursday's 12-8 win.

    And they were disappointed.

    Bucs defensive tackle Gerald McCoy, right, watches practice alongside outside linebacker Lavonte David, left, earlier this month in Tampa. [LOREN ELLIOTT   |   Times]
  4. The Florida Gators' case for QB Luke Del Rio

    College

    GAINESVILLE — It took three years and two transfers for Florida's Luke Del Rio to become a starting quarterback.

    Florida Gators quarterback Luke Del Rio (14) warms up next to quarterback Austin Appleby (12) before the game against the North Texas Mean Green on Saturday September 17, 2016 at Ben Hill Griffin Stadium in Gainesville, Florida. Final score was Florida 32 North Texas 0. (Monica Herndon, Times)
  5. Marc Topkin's takeaways from Thursday's Rays-Jays game

    The Heater

    RHP Tommy Hunter has been so good emerging as the top set-up man for closer Alex Colome with a dazzling run, but twice in five days he has given up a game-losing homer, Sunday to Cleveland's Austin Jackson and Thursday to Toronto's Justin Smoak.