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Captain Comeback

Calloway powers Knights to tournament championship

Currituck 67 Perquimans 64

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Currituck's Jayden Calloway holds up the trophy in celebration with his team winning the tournament against Perquimans, Friday.

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By Malcolm Shields
Sports Editor

Saturday, December 30, 2017

HERTFORD — After three quarters of play, it appeared that the Perquimans boys basketball team was set to cruise to a win in the Perquimans Holiday Tournament championship game on Friday evening.

In the final eight minutes, Currituck’s Jayden Calloway put a hold on the Pirates’ celebration.

Calloway scored 20 of his game-high 34 points in the fourth quarter to power the Knights to a 67-64 victory over Perquimans to clinch the tournament crown.

Currituck (4-7) trailed 49-39 entering the fourth quarter. Calloway, a sophomore, scored the Knights' first five points in the frame to cut the deficit to five points.

“My shots were just falling,” Calloway said. 

Even with his heroics, Calloway also praised his teammates.

KJ Harvey and Ricky Owens also had key baskets in the fourth quarter.

Harvey finished with six points, while Owens had eight.

Logan Harp connected on two three pointers to finish with eight points in the game for the Knights.

Owens was selected to the all-tournament team.

The Knights took a 54-53 lead, their first lead of the second half, following a basket by Calloway.

In the final three-plus minutes, the two teams alternated holding the lead.

The Pirates (9-4) responded with points by Rodney Lyons, Malik Leach, DJ Signorelli and Karaye Twine down the stretch.

A Leach basket gave Perquimans a 61-60 lead, but Calloway scored five consecutive points to put the Knights up 65-61 with 1:24 to go.

Down 65-64 with under a minute to go, the Pirates had two chances to tie the game.

The first opportunity ended in a turnover.

After the Knights ran valuable seconds off the clock, Calloway, who was named to the all-tournament team, made two free throws to put Currituck up three with 18.6 seconds left.

With 7.7 seconds to go, the Pirates got another chance after a missed jumper.

After the Knights secured the rebound, a Currituck player stepped out of bounds, which gave Perquimans another chance to send the game into overtime.

A Perquimans final-second shot from the top of the key fell short as the Knights ran off the court in celebration.

“They just fought. They never stopped fighting,” Currituck coach Gunnell Rupert said. “They've got a lot of heart. We've got a young group. They just never gave up. I'm proud of that.”

Rupert noted in the final defensive sequence, the Knights went to man-to-man defense.

Perquimans coach Tommy Johnson took the blame for not changing his defensive alignment the final quarter.

“They were hot,” Johnson said of Currituck. “We had hands in faces. You got to give it to them. They hit the shots. I thought our kids played hard the whole time.”

Lyons led the Pirates with 18 points and five rebounds, Leach had 16 points with seven assists and Twine added 10 points.

Leach and Twine were named to the all-tournament team with Ocracoke's Liam Caswell.

Ocracoke beat Gateway Christian (Va.) in the third-place game 63-48 on Friday evening.

BOYS BASKETBALL

John A. Holmes 76, East Wake Academy 32: The Aces (5-2) jumped out to an early 19-9 lead after the first quarter and cruised to the win at a basketball tournament at South Creek on Thursday.

Mitjonta Stanley led Edenton with 21 points and four assists, Antuan Sharpe added 14 points and three assists, KD Raynor had nine points with six rebounds in the win.

Stanley was named to the all-tournament team.

The Aces led 47-11 at halftime.

John A. Holmes coach Robert Woodley noted that the contest was by far the team's best defensive effort on the season.

The coach added that the team has a lot to improve on with a lot of games to play.

Edenton returns to the hardwood on Wednesday at Currituck.

Northeastern 67, Gates 49: The Eagles (7-2) defeated the Red Barons at a basketball tournament at Hertford County High School on Thursday.

Brian Jones led Northeastern with 22 points and three steals.

Damar Sutton followed with 16 points and 16 rebounds.

GIRLS BASKETBALL

Perquimans 47, South Creek 33: The Lady Pirates (5-5) won their matchup at a basketball tournament at South Creek on Thursday.

Rachel Lane scored 16 points with two rebounds and two assists.

Lane, a senior, was named the player of the game.

McCrae Knapp followed with 14 points, five assists and three steals, while Kayle Knapp scored nine points with four assists and four steals.

The Lady Cougars from Robersonville, drops to 4-9 this winter.

John A. Holmes 50, Southside 48: Edenton (4-3) edged out the Lady Seahawks at the South Creek basketball tournament on Thursday.

Southside from Chocowinity, falls to 5-2 on the season.

Hertford County 48, Northeastern 20: The Lady Bears (3-7) routed the Lady Eagles (1-6) at a basketball tournament at Hertford County High School on Thursday.

Shelishia Bond and Tasharli Spellman each scored five points for Northeastern.

Spellman added eight rebounds, while Bond posted six rebounds.

Varina (Va.) 57, Currituck 32: The Lady Knights (6-4) lost to the Blue Devils at a Christmas tournament at Boo Williams Sportsplex in Hampton, Virginia on Thursday.

Lauren Gerni, a senior, led Currituck with nine points, while Ta’Nia Seymore and Destiny Ferebee each added five points.

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