With Rosewood and North Duplin looking up at Neuse Charter in the Carolina 1A Conference standings, Wednesday’s matchup between the Eagles and Rebels was pivotal for both squads.
The Eagles had four players score in double figures, and they were able to hold off the Rebels 56-50.
“I thought we played pretty well,” Rosewood head coach Daniel Mitchell said.
With 2:45 left until halftime, Rosewood (6-11 overall, 3-2 CC) took a 26-19 lead on a three-pointer from Micah Cox.
The Rebels (6-11, 2-3) trimmed the deficit to 26-21 on their next possession, but the Eagles answered with a 5-0 run and led 31-21 at the break.
“The first half, we were comfortable, and we knocked down some shots,” Mitchell said. “In the second half, North Duplin was able to speed the game up, and really get after us defensively, and get us into some scramble situations.”
Throughout the third quarter, North Duplin kept whittling down the Eagles’ lead. North Duplin cut the deficit to a single possession, 37-34, on Dujuan Armwood’s free throw after a technical foul.
The Rebels started the fourth quarter off with a 6-2 run, which included baskets from Donavan Armwood, Dujuan Armwood and Cole Beavers, and took a 40-39 lead.
“It seemed like it was all going downhill. North Duplin was all of a sudden getting easy buckets,” Mitchell said.
Dalton Philippeau’s layup helped the Eagles retake the lead for good with just over four minutes to play.
Philippeau’s basket was part of an 8-0 run that saw the Eagles take a 47-40 lead. The Rebels attempted another comeback, and free throws from the Donavan and Dujuan Armwood made it 47-43.
However, the Rebels could not get any closer. With 8.1 seconds left, David Lamm knocked down a free throw that increased the Eagles’ lead to 56-47 and sealed the outcome in the Eagles’ favor.
“It was really holding our feet to the fire, staying focused, not losing our cool, and not hitting the panic button,” Mitchell said.
Cox scored a team-high 13 points. Philippeau and Ty Waltman finished the game with 12 points apiece, and Lamm contributed 10 points.
Dujuan Armwood and Donavan Armwood tallied 23 and 13 points, respectively. Levi George supplied six points.
Rosewood hosts Hobbton (4-10, 1-1) on Friday, while North Duplin entertains Neuse Charter (15-7, 5-0).