Union Pines holds off East Surry

First Posted: 12/30/2008

Thomas Smith
Staff Reporter

East Surry was unable to make it two comeback wins in a row Tuesday, falling to Union Pines 64-55.
East had mounted a strong comeback one night earlier, battling from 15 points down in the first half to take out Patrick Co. (Va.) 55-52 Monday night.
Tuesday, the Cardinals led 24-23 at the half after senior Walt Tuttles banked in a 3-pointer from the right elbow just as the first half buzzer sounded.
Despite the momentum from Tuttles shot, Union Pines turned up the heat on the Cardinals in the third quarter, forcing turnovers and capitalizing on any and all East Surry mistakes.
With the third quarter run the Vikings turned a one point deficit into a 10-point lead that would last for the majority of the second half.
A pivotal moment in the game came when a Union Pines player hit a contested lay-up, getting fouled in the process. Before both teams could take their places at the free throw line, a technical was called on East Surry, giving the Vikings two more free throws and the ball. After all was said and done the sequence resulted in a 5 point turnaround in favor of Union Pines.
But despite the Cardinals poor fortune, they continued to fight back, cutting the Viking lead in half at 59-54 with 2:40 left to play in the game. Another technical foul, this time on Union Pines and a terrific interior pass from Matt Covington to Spence Tuttle kept the Cardinals hopes alive with time running down.
But East could not stop the Vikings attack in the final minutes, with Union Pines pulling away for the win.
The second half belonged to Union Pines forward Johnathon Toomer, who scored 22 of his game-high 26-points in the second half, including a buzzer beating baseline dunk to end the third quarter. The Vikings outsized the Cardinals and kept East Surry off the offensive and defensive boards for the majority of the night.
Walt Tuttle led East Surry with 21 points, followed by brother Spence Tuttle with 11 points and Patrick Marion with 8 points.
Even with the loss, East Surry coach Jason Anderson said he thought his team played well, possibly even better than in the previous nights win.
I thought we played a lot better of a ball game tonight than we did last night and you hate to say that about a loss, but I thought we executed our offense well, we got some shots we wanted, we got the ball to the people we wanted to get it to, Anderson said.
But you know weve got some injuries, losing Marcus Lawson definitely hurt us on the boards tonight, not having Hunter (Diamont) that is still hurting us. But I am tickled with how we played. Our kids come out and they give you everything they have every night and that is all you can ask.
East Surry will host East Wilkes Friday in a Northwest 1-A Conference game.

Union Pines (Va.) 64,
East Surry 55

Union Pines Johnathon Toomer 26, Will Maness 7, Demirovic 6, Smith 6, Henderson 5, MacPherson 4, Brown 3, Patel 2

East Surry Walt Tuttle 21, Spence Tuttle 11, Marion 8, Hunter 8, M. Covington 3, S. Covington 2, Hoosier 2, v

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