Wolverines lose close battle to Avery

Published 7:36 pm Thursday, January 9, 2014

In a game featuring non-stop action but only modest scoring, Polk County turned on its best defense of the season, but lost a 47-40 contest to Avery County in men’s basketball at Columbus on Wednesday Jan. 8.

The Wolverines are now 5-5.

The Wolverines’ Jaron Bontrager goes to the hoop. (photo by Mark Schmerling)

The Wolverines’ Jaron Bontrager goes to the hoop. (photo by Mark Schmerling)

“We weren’t being very patient,” said Polk coach Josh McEntire, who noted that his players took many shots far from the hoop. Early in the game, the Wolverines’ Wes Brady sank a pair of three pointers to help Polk take an 18-17 lead after the first quarter. In the second quarter, Avery outscored the Wolverines by two to keep a 24-23 halftime advantage.

Sign up for our daily email newsletter

Get the latest news sent to your inbox

After Avery pulled ahead in the third quarter, Anthony Carson’s layup with about a minute left in that period, cut the visitors’ lead to 34-33. The teams traded baskets to end the third period, with Polk’s Jaron Bontrager shaving Avery’s lead to 35-34, where it stood with eight minutes to go.

Sequan Miller got Polk back to within a point early in the last quarter, before the Vikings got some breathing room. A six and one-half minute scoring drought by Polk helped seal the outcome.

“That (drought) was killer,” admitted McEntire. “Defensively, that was our best game of the year. You hold somebody to 47 (points), you should win that game.” Polk’s previous game was Dec. 20 against Mountain Heritage.

“It’s hard to go 20 days without playing,” said McEntire, but he gave the Vikings credit.

“It’s tough to move with their defense,” he said. “They kept the ball in front of them. They don’t gamble.”

In the last eight minutes, “They had a normal quarter; we couldn’t score,” McEntire said.

Jamal Tanner, who sat out with a hand injury, is expected back in action next week.

The Wolverines visit Owen next Tuesday, Jan. 14; travel to North Henderson on Wednesday, Jan. 15; and host Hendersonville on Jan. 17.