by Hunter Dawkins
The return of two coaches to their roots in the Pass Christian gymnasium Friday night was partially successful. West Harrison Head Basketball Coach Tommy Seawright came back to the environment where he started his career under Pass Christian Head Coach Wayne “Buddy” Kennedy and the 6A classification Hurricanes beat the Pirates for their third and final time 68-54.
“It’s always fun coming back to the place I began my career here in Pass Christian, but tough under my mentor, Coach Kennedy,” said Hurricanes Coach Seawright. “We played with the discipline that I learned under Coach Kennedy.”
On the other end, Hurricanes Girls Basketball Coach Otis Gates did not get the results he hoped for. The longtime former Pass Christian Girls Basketball Coach did not get the same result, losing a close matchup 48-47.
“We’ve been going through some growing pains,” said Lady Hurricanes Coach Gates. “Fortunately, the teams in our district we have been playing so we’ll know what to expect.”
BOYS: West Harrison 68-54
The Pirates (0-8) jumped on the scoreboard early with an 8-3 run until the Hurricanes (6-2) called its first timeout with 6:13 left during the first period. Despite the stoppage, West Harrison still was behind to Pass Christian 17-16 at the end of the first period. Pass Christian Sophomore Point Guard Kameron White knocked down two 3-point baskets to highlight the period.
Scoring was minimal before the half, as the defense stepped up on both ends. The Hurricanes led after two periods, 27-26 and never lost the lead again. The Pirates could not find the basket very often in the second half, as the Hurricanes outscored them 41-28 in the second half.
West Harrison Senior Point Guard Brandon Brock put on a second-half scoring spree of 20 points, which Pass Christian could not recover from. “Brandon’s from here originally before his parents had to move, so this game means a lot more to him,” said Seawright.
Brock led all scorers with 29 points and the Hurricanes other guard; Zarius Gill paced West Harrison with 13 points. Senior Guard Koby Hathorn led Pass Christian with 14 points.
“Early foul trouble handcuffed our play,” said Pass Christian Head Basketball Coach Kennedy. “Our original game plan was effected by this where I had to arrange a different style. In the second half, we went cold as nothing went in for us.”
GIRLS: Pass Christian 48-47
Unlike the boys, this game was close wire-to-wire. The Lady Pirates (4-4) put an early 11-9 lead on the scoreboard after the first period and took their highest lead of the game into the half with a score of 22-15.
After the Lady Hurricanes (1-6) went on a 27-19 run for a West Harrison lead 42-41 in the final period, Pass Christian called a timeout with 3:43 left in the game. This appeared to help, as the Lady Pirates went on a 7-5 run; including a three-point play by Pass Christian Senior Point Guard A’niyah Price, until Gates called his final timeout with 22.9 seconds left.
Nothing changed after the timeout and the Pass Christian Lady Pirates were victorious.
“I thought the girls played hard and as a team,” said Pass Christian Girls Head Basketball Coach Greta Ainsworth. “We could’ve taken care of the basketball a bit better, as well as making more shots from the free-throw line, but all-in-all we played as a unit.”
Pass Christian’s Kylah Bell led all scorers with 21 points while the Hurricanes Guard Simaru Fields hit four 3-point baskets and finished with 15 points for West Harrison.
The West Harrison Boys will play in a tournament in Picayune Monday night against Salmen High School of Slidell, Louisiana while the Lady Hurricanes play in the early afternoon against Biloxi in the same tournament. Pass Christian is scheduled to play against D’Iberville on the road in a December 6 matchup while the Lady Pirates will play against the Laurel Lady Tornadoes in the Pearl River Community College Thanksgiving Shootout at the Marvin White Coliseum in Poplarville Saturday November 30. This game is scheduled for 9:30am.