By STEVE SHWARTS
The Texas High Tigers rallied from a 14-point halftime deficit to beat the Greenville Lions 66-63 in a basketball season opener on Monday night in the Lions Den.
The Lions missed two tying 3-pointers in the final seconds.
“I was proud of our players’ execution in the first half on both ends of the floor,” said Lions coach Marcus Smith. “In the second half we slacked up on our defense and offensively we were sloppy with the ball. We never gave up and never gave in. We had an opportunity at the end to win or tie the game, but those two shots just didn’t fall.”
The Lions started out strong in the first quarter as Marquis Taylor, Dartanon Wilson and Darion Neal scored to give Greenville an 11-1 lead.
The visiting Tigers started chipping away as Chris Hart, Success Blevins and Kevin Paxton all hit buckets to get the Tigers back within 16-13 with 1:50 left in the first quarter.
Greenville ended the first quarter on a 5-2 run to lead 21-15 after the first quarter.
Greenville outscored Texas High 20-12 in the second quarter to lead 41-27 at halftime.
The second half was a different story as Texas High outscored the Lions 39-22 over the final two quarters, including a 26-12 advantage in the third quarter.
Dartanon Wilson fired in 28 points to lead Greenville, while Marquis Taylor drilled nine points and Darion Neal added seven.
Chris Hart fired in a team-high 19 points for the Tigers, while Daryon Grant pumped in 15 and Success Blevins tallied 14.
“It was a great game for us.” said Smith. “I was proud of all my guys tonight. We have a few first year varsity players on our team. We stepped up and played a good game tonight. Dartanon Wilson, he’s our leader and had an outstanding game. Darion Neal our point guard did a great job of taking care of the basketball.”
Greenville travels to West Mesquite Friday for a 7:30 p.m. varsity basketball game with junior varsity and freshman starting at 5:30 p.m.