Boys basketball: Morris the difference in win for Capital
CHARLESTON, W.Va. -- Would the performance make a sound if Carrington Morris exploded for 27 points and 14 rebounds in a sectional boys basketball game but no one was there to see it?
That essentially transpired Monday at Capital High School, as the junior guard led the Cougars to a 75-50 win over Ripley in the first round of the Class AAA Region 3, Section 1 tournament and avenging a three-point home loss to the Vikings that took place little more than three weeks ago.
Less than 75 people attended the game, which saw Capital (9-14) open just one section of bleachers on the home side of the court and buckets bring about the equivalent responses of well-made putts on a golf course.
When given the opportunity to remark on his team's ability to drastically turn around a result against the same opponent in less than a month and the lack of fan support Capital Coach Carl Clark summed it up in two words.
"No comment," Clark said.
When pressed, Clark repeated himself.
Morris did plenty of talking through the course of the game, helping Capital break a 16-16 tie at the end of the first quarter to take a 37-24 lead by halftime. The Vikings made five of their first 10 attempts from 3-point range, but could not sustain Capital's ability to get to the rim and keep Ripley (7-16) off the boards.
Capital had a 23-14 edge in rebounding by halftime, and finished with a plus-22 margin off the glass (47-25).
"It's just something that's been instinctive," Morris said of his ability to get to the rim with the basketball and to follow missed shots.
"It's something that I've been doing my whole life. You just have to want the ball. That's the only way I can go get it."
Morris didn't have to follow his own shot often. He sank 10-of-16 attempts, with six of those makes coming on nine shots in the first half.
Others got involved as well. Senior forward Austin Coleman had 15 points, sophomore forward Brad Grose had 13 and Morris finished with a game-high five assists and shared the team lead in steals with three, a number also grabbed by sophomore guard Jordan Kinney.
Morris did not play in the Vikings' 65-62 win over the Cougars on Jan. 30.
"He made the difference in the game early," Ripley Coach Craig Harmon said. "We couldn't contain him. He's too quick, and that's how he gets a lot of his boards."
Vikings junior forward Kade Harrison led the Vikings with 19 points, but had three of his four 3-point field goals in the first half. After halftime he was 1-of-5 from long range.
Senior guard Casey Smith also scored in double figures for Ripley, finishing with 12 points.
Capital advances to the Region 3, Section 1 semifinals Wednesday, when they will take on top-seeded and third-ranked South Charleston (20-2) at the South Charleston Community Center.
Contact Preps Editor Derek Taylor at firstname.lastname@example.org or 304-348-5170. Follow him on Twitter @ItsreallyDT