By Stephen Buus (For OzarksSportsZone.com)
Greenfield—Separated by about a dozen miles on US 160, Lockwood and Greenfield have been archrivals in practically every sport since anyone can remember.
On Friday the visiting Tigers got the upper hand, spoiling the Wildcats’ courtwarming with a 61-52 victory in a Spring River Valley Conference showdown before a packed house at GHS.
Greenfield (11-8, 2-1) took control early, riding the hot hand of its top player Marcus Wright. The senior canned four of five from downtown in the first quarter, including a rare 4-point play in the closing seconds as the Wildcats led 15-8.
Greenfield pushed the advantage to double digits at 26-16, but Lockwood (11-6, 3-0) took over from there with an 11-1 run over the last two minutes of the first half to tie it up at 27-27. A deep trey by senior Cade Holman at the buzzer capped the rally.
“We knew coming in it was going to be a hostile environment,” said Tiger coach Aaron Shockley. “We’ve got our backs against the wall playing one of our biggest rivals. I told the kids it’s gonna be a game of runs; we’ve just got to have more than them and make theirs shorter than they want.
“We came together as a team. We got into some foul trouble early and our bench stepped up tremendously and did a lot of good things for us.”
Lockwood kept the momentum going into the second half, taking its first lead on the opening possession and never looking back. The Tiger defense stiffened in the third quarter, allowing just five Wildcat points.
Shockley said, “Cade Holman has been leading us in scoring but I feel like he did a lot of good things. They were having to defend him and he was able to find those other guys who have stepped into some big roles this year, and they did what they’ve been doing in practice and it finally transitioned into a game. They hit those big shots and finished those big shots.
“Jack Purinton was an absolute animal on the boards. Every one of those guys from one to fifteen busted their butts tonight and did their role.”
Greenfield gave the home folks a glimmer of hope down the stretch as they pulled within 58-52, but Wright missed a breakaway layup and Lockwood hit three free throws to close out a nine-point win.
Wildcat coach Preston Hyde said, “It’s always tough with the distractions of the whole (courtwarming) week and the day, but that’s no excuse. It doesn’t affect your effort, I don’t think. It doesn’t affect our ability to block out or anything like that. We just got outworked. We all were a little more consumed with trying to do things on our own rather than use each other”
Holman led the Tigers with 22 points and Paxton Masterson added 11. Wright was high man for the Wildcats with 23 points but did not make a shot from the field in the middle two periods. Colin White chipped in with 10.
Lockwood is back in action on Saturday at noon against Wheatland at Southwest Baptist University. Greenfield hosts SRVC foe Pierce City on Tuesday.
Lockwood 8 19 17 17—61
Greenfield 15 12 5 20—52
Lockwood: Cade Holman 22, Paxton Masterson 11, Jack Purinton 7, Josh Osterdyk 6, Brady Oeltjen 6, Logan Sparkman 5, Gage Dubs 2, Zach Brewer 2.
Greenfield: Marcus Wright 23, Colin White 10, Sawyer Dodd 6, Bailey Baker 5, Daunte Stafford 4, Seth Trask 4.