In a rapidly paced game that saw 15 lead changes, the Sussex Tech boys’ basketball team defeated Mount Pleasant 63-62 March 1 to move into the quarterfinals of the DIAA Boys’ Basketball State Tournament; they will face 2017 state champion Smyrna Saturday, March 3.
Sophomore guard Devon Reynolds led the Ravens with 14 points, while Jaquan Burton scored 12 and Dominick Conquest tallied 11.
Mount Pleasant’s Douglas Sneh and Timothy Pittman scored 18 and 15, respectively.
“I think in the early part of the game we forced some shots we normally don’t take,” said Tech coach Damon Ayers. “Generally, we do dribble penetration and kick to create shot opportunities for each other, and, tonight, we didn’t do that at the start. As the game progressed, we sort of got back into things we’ve been doing all season, which is creating shots for each other.”
The Ravens hit crucial free throws down the stretch to keep the game close and eventually take the victory.
“We put a tremendous amount of time into [foul shots] in practice to prepare our guys for situations just like that,” said Ayers. “We put our kids into this type of situation so they can maintain their poise. These kids have put in a lot of time in the off-season, and, now, they are starting to reap the rewards for their hard work.”
The Ravens’ game with Smyrna at the Bob Carpenter Center in Newark will tip off at 6 p.m., Saturday, March 3.