By LARRY HYPES
Bluefield Daily Telegraph
TAZEWELL, Va. —
A home upset was at hand until Tazewell had to spend a late evening with Paris.
Paris Jamison, that is, who scored eight late points to rally visiting Martinsville (7-6) to a 77-69 win over Tazewell (5-6) in non-district action Friday.
A quartet of double-digit scorers, led by Jalen Jordan’s 24 points, was almost enough to grab the victory.
Tazewell led by as many as nine points, 51-42, on Jordan’s trey with 4:00 to in the third stanza.
The Henry County Bulldogs bounced back behind Darius Dillard, Curtis Pilson, and Jamison in the final frame, however, outscoring Tazewell 20-11.
Martinsville made five shots in a row at the end, the hometown Bulldogs did not, and that sealed the deal.
“It came down to a minute-and-a-half game at the end,” grinned MHS coach Jeff Adkins. “We were tied at 69-apiece and then Paris really stepped up for us.
“He’s our best player and he battled fouls all night tonight but when it counted he was there to pull us through.”
Noah Walker’s back-to-back buckets jump started Tazewell into a lead to open the third quarter while Jordan and Colin Hancock worked hard to preserve and protect against the taller, athletic Martinsville team.
Isaac Santana worked hard inside and proved a strong force for the home Dogs all night.
“We played hard. I might have taken a couple of guys out for a little too long on account of fouls but maybe not,” Tazewell head coach Lee Walker said. “We got a great effort during that time. I’m satisfied with the way we battled out there tonight.”
Early on, Martinsville broke up a tight game midway through the second period, going on an 11-2 run with strong inside rebounding and scoring 25 points in the period before Jordan, Hancock, and Santana rallied the home team.
Their efforts were crucial, as steady Noah Walker battled double teams and fouls. Walker played much of the second half with four fouls.
Jaque Clark’s corner trey with 3:50 remaining gave Martinsville its first lead, 65-64, since the first minute of the second half. Hancock then answered with three minutes left in dramatic fashion with a three-ball of his own as Tazewell took its final lead of the evening, at 67-65.
Pilson and Jamison were deadly in the closing stages as Tazewell could not hit on trio of three-point tries.
“We got a lot closer,” said Jordan, in reference to Martinsville’s 40-point win two weeks ago. “Tonight we had a better effort against a really good team. We brought the ‘D’ up in the second half. Coach (Lee) Walker got after us at halftime and the guys responded.”
Santana, who recorded a double-double with 11 points and 11 rebounds, noted, “We got busy in the third quarter, finally got some rebounds, Colin hit his threes, and we kept going after it.”
Hancock had three steals, dropped in 14 points including four three-pointers, and Walker scored 11 to go with eight rebounds despite ;imited second half action. Jordan had four steals.
Pilson (13) and Devonte Holland (12) were solid for Martinsville. Larry Perkins and Jalen Dillard keyed the rebounding for the visitors.
Martinsville was 15-22 at the line while Tazewell made 14-of-22 free throws.
Tazewell hosts Southwest District leading Carroll County Tuesday with the girls varsity game starting at 6 p.m.
At Tazewell Middle School
Jaque Clark 5, Demetrius Davis 5, Curtis Pilson 13. Devonte Holland 12, Cameron Turner 2, Darius Dillard 9, Paris Jamison 21, Larry Perkins 5, Jalen Dillard 5.
Christian Lewis 7, Colin Hancock 11, Issac Santana 11, Jalen Jordan 24, Jesse Mountain 2, Noah Walker 11.
Martinsville.........................11 25 21 20 — 77
Tazewell......................... .....11 22 25 11 — 69
Three-point goals – M, 5 (Pilson -2, Clark, Holland, Perkins -1). T, 6 ( Hancock – 4, Lewis, Jordan -1). Fouled out – none.