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Cold shooting kills Comets in 52-41 loss to William Fleming

It was simply one of those nights. Unable to generate any consistency on offense, all Halifax County High School could do Tuesday night against William Fleming High School was keep the game close. And, the Comets struggled to do that over the final eight minutes.

William Fleming High School grabbed the lead at the outset and never lost it, rolling up a 52-41 win over the Comets in Tuesday's Western Valley District game at Halifax County High School.

The loss was the third in a row for the Comets who fell to 0-6 in in district play. Halifax County is battling to land fourth place and the final berth in the Western Valley District Tournament.

Halifax County High School must win at least one of its last two district games in order to have any chance at grabbing the final tournament berth.

Only one Comets player that routinely generates a good measure of offense was productive in the game. Keyshawn Johnson scored 11 points for the Comets, but sank only one field goal and two free throws in the second half.

Evin Morrison came off of the bench to score 11 points, five of them coming in the fourth quarter in what was his second-best scoring night of the season.

On the other hand, Dakota Delaware was held to eight points, James Burden scored only six points, Trelanne Johnson scored only two and Tavion Petty was scoreless.

"We had the shots that we wanted " pointed out Comets Head Coach Larry Epperly.

"We just couldn't make them. I thought the effort was there and the spirit was good. We just had a hard time making basketball plays. Against a team that plays really solid defense like William Fleming, you've got to be able to make some plays."

William Fleming did make shots and demonstrated it at the start of the game when Traxonte Sawyers and Shalik Law buried 3-pointers on the Colonels' first two possessions of the game to give their team a quick 6-0 lead.

The Comets, by contrast, hit only one field goal in the first three minutes of the game, that coming from Delaware, and fell behind 10-2.

Seven unanswered points by the Comets down the stretch in the first quarter brought the Comets to within two points at 13-11. William Fleming High school's Warren Craft aburied a 3-pointer near the end of the quarter to give the Colonels a 16-11 lead at the end of the first eight minutes of play.

The Comets got as close as three points early in the second quarter, but having scored only eight points in that eight-minute stanza, trailed 25-19 at halftime.

William Fleming High School buried its first four 3-point shot attempts and hit six of its first seven attempts from beyond the 3-point line before finishing the half with a 6-10 mark.

The Comets hit only one of six attempts from beyond the 3-point line, that one shot coming from Johnson in the first quarter.

Trailing by seven points near the mid-point of the third quarter, the Comets rang up six unanswered points with baskets from Johnson, Burden and Morrison to pull to within a point at 32-31 with 2:49 left in the third quarter.

William Fleming High School countered with an 11-2 run over the final 2:43 of the third quarter to take a 43-33 lead into the final period. The Colonels hit a free throw to open the fourth quarter and extend their cushion to 11 points. Halifax County High School got no closer than seven points the rest of the way as the Colonels went on to seal the 11-point win.

Craft, who sank a pair of three-point shots in the game, led the Colonels with a game-high 16 points. Law, who buried four 3-point shots, followed with 15 points.