by Hunter Dawkins, Publisher/Owner – thegazebogazette@gmail.com or hdawkins@supertalk.fm

With a dim Friday night in the balance, the West Harrison Hurricanes beat both Long Beach basketball teams in the Eye of the Storm convincingly to keep hold of the third seed in District 4-6A.  The Lady Hurricanes (10-10, 5-2) never trailed, defeating the Lady Bearcats 51-30 while the ‘Canes (13-8, 5-3) boys dominated the floor the entire game, winning 49-31.

BOYS:  West Harrison 49 Long Beach 31

After the girls team brought the flag down for the national anthem, the ‘Canes jumped right into scoring with Jamarcus McCalebb knocking down an early three-point basket.  With another three-pointer converted by Owen Reese during the second period followed by three consecutive field goals in the paint from Jazear Carter, the halftime score was 24-19 West Harrison.

Coming out of the gates, the ‘Canes shut down the Bearcats defensively.  Long Beach (4-18, 0-7) was outpaced by West Harrison with a 25-12 run and only four field goals made by the Bearcats in the second half.

Carter finished with 15 from the paint while Kameron Bolden had 10 points for the ‘Canes.  Andre Windham was Long Beach’s only double digit scorer with 10 points.

“It’s always tough and always will be for a rivalry game,” expressed West Harrison Coach Jeff Norwood.  “Long Beach is a lot better team, I just know they are young but hungry.  I thought we stayed with them until we broke the ice, but we just have to keep working at it regardless of our shot selection.”

GIRLS:  West Harrison 51 Long Beach 30

Unlike the boys, the girls match was scoring right from the start.  Both teams combined for 11 field goals during the first period, but the Lady ‘Canes took the 14-10 lead behind three converted jump shots from Miranda Parker.

West Harrison went on a 12-5 run for the period to take a 26-15 halftime lead.

Similarly to the boys, the girls defense held the Lady Bearcats (8-12, 2-5) only 15 points while scoring 25, including 9 more points from West Harrison’s Parker and 8 by Sydnei Barber.

Barber topped the Lady ‘Canes with 19 points while Parker had 16 points and two three-point plays.  Kyleigh Williams and Shania Hope both led Long Beach with 12 points.

“I thought we did what are game plan was and recovered really well from our last game,” said Patty Norwood.  “If we can finish second or third, it is what it is and we have played everyone twice.”

Both teams are on the road next week as Long Beach plays at Hancock while West Harrison plays the last regular season road game at Pascagoula.