It was a very slow start for both teams, with the first basket coming on a Mountain Grove jumper from Bobby Otwell with 4:24 left in the first quarter. The two defenses would continue to control the pace of the game in the last few minutes of the first. Norwood senior J.D. Chadwell would cap off the quarter with a baseline drive followed by a lay-up with one second remaining, closing out the quarter with the Pirates on top, 8-4.
The Norwood offense would start off hot in the second with a Brady Jenkins three-pointer. Chadwell’s excellent passes paid dividends for his teammates all night, most notably junior Zayne Tate. Those passes helped the Pirates jump out to a 25-10 lead at the half.
Norwood would go on a 9-0 run to begin the third quarter, as Chadwell and Derek Davis began hitting big shots. Mountain Grove would also continue to struggle shooting from the field, with the Panthers’ first basket of the third quarter coming with a little over four minutes left to play. Mountain Grove would add a few quick scores behind the shooting of Otwell and sophomore Trey Dixson to cut the lead to 37-19 at the end of the third.
The Panther defense would slow down the Norwood offense enough in the fourth quarter to pull within thirteen, but that was a close as they would get. The Pirates hit big shots down the stretch to pull away for the 47-24 victory.
Norwood’s Tate led all scorers with thirteen points, adding eight rebounds. Chadwell finished the night with eleven points. Mountain Grove’s Otwell had ten points and nine rebounds to lead the Panthers.
The Pirates’ will host another Wright County team on Friday, taking on Hartville. Mountain Grove will travel to Fair Grove.