Argyle prevails in regional semifinal
Posted Mar 3 2012 10:57AM - By Adam Boedeker-Staff Writter DRC, ABN/DentonRC
COMMERCE/ARGYLE, Texas - COMMERCE — Entering Friday’s fourth-round playoff game against Texarkana Pleasant Grove, Argyle head coach John King knew his team had to contain Hawks center Dustin Thomas in order to move on in the postseason.
He also knew something else about Pleasant Grove’s 6-8 big man, and the tip he got played a big factor in Argyle’s 49-30 victory at Texas A&M-Commerce, which put the Eagles in today’s 2 p.m. Class 3A Region II final against Wilmer-Hutchins.
“What we were told [by other coaches] was that when he gets tired they don’t want to take him out of the game, so they go into a zone so he can rest a little,” King said after his team held Thomas to just seven points. “So he was able to rest while we held the ball, but they weren’t able to score when we were holding the ball. We were able to lull them to sleep, we got an easy bucket, and that was it.”
After Argyle built a 14-8 first-quarter lead, the Eagles started the second quarter with the ball, and point guard Zach Dickerson held the ball just across midcourt. Then he held the ball some more.
The Eagles held the ball for the first 3:41 of the second quarter before Andrew Resch scored on a designed lob off an inbounds pass for the first points of the quarter with just more than four minutes remaining in the half.
“I think that four-minute stretch took them out of that zone for the rest of the game,” King said. “We felt like they had to play us man-to-man after that, and we were the better team. I think that showed tonight.”
In the previous two rounds, Pleasant Grove’s opponents employed a similar tactic, but the strategy ended up backfiring on Crandall and North Forney in the second half.
That was not the case for Argyle (30-8), which built a quick lead to start the game thanks to an encore performance from senior shooting guard Connor York.
York began the game in a similar manner to which he started Tuesday’s regional quarterfinal win over Lovejoy, hitting three 3-pointers in the opening quarter to help the Eagles jump out to a quick lead. He went 4-for-6 from beyond the arc in the first half against Lovejoy.
“He was pumped,” teammate Clarke Overlander said. “That was the most I’ve ever seen him jacked up in the locker room. He was ready to go. He was ready to fire. I set him that first screen early to free him and he buried that thing. That’s senior leadership.”
Dickerson said York was the logical choice to feed the ball to early on because he was open.
“He’s one of the best shooters on our team,” said Dickerson, who finished with 11 points. “My job was just to get it to the open man, and tonight Connor was that guy.”
Even though Dickerson was able to control the ball as Argyle only turned it over eight times, and York got off to the hot start, the biggest factor in the win was the Eagles’ ability to shut down Thomas, who scored 30 points in the previous two games for Pleasant Grove (29-3).
“That was all Andrew [Resch],” Overlander said. “He played a great game. The plan going in was for him to play his game, and we’d [Overlander and Chadd Bossow] help him out. He did a fantastic job. All the credit goes to him. He shut them down. All we did was help him.”
Resch finished the night with 10 points and eight rebounds, while Overlander scored a game-high 13 points.
The win puts Argyle in the regional final with just one more victory standing between the Eagles and a trip to the UIL state tournament in Austin next week.
In their way is Wilmer-Hutchins, which was reopened this school year, taking students and coaches from the closed campus at Dallas A. Maceo Smith, the team that ended Argyle’s playoff run last season in the regional final with a 63-60 overtime decision.
There are four players on this year’s Argyle squad that saw significant minutes last season, including two starters.
One of those is Overlander, who said today’s game will be a chance for the ultimate redemption, and a trip to Austin.
“It’s a big deal for me,” Overlander said, pausing. “They’ve got it coming.
“That’s all I’m saying. They’ve got it coming.”
ADAM BOEDEKER can be reached at 940-566-6872. His e-mail address is firstname.lastname@example.org.
Argyle 49, Texarkana Pleasant Grove 30
Pleasant Grove 8 5 7 10 — 30
Argyle 14 5 13 17 — 49
Pleasant Grove (29-3) — Reggie Myrks 4, Dustin Thomas 7, LaDarious Reid 7, Reece Dunlap 10, Nick Reed 2.
Argyle (30-8) — Chadd Bossow 2, Zach Dickerson 11, Connor York 9, Andrew Resch 10, Clarke Overlander 13, Luke McMullen 2, Chase Kammerer 2.
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