It has been said that is never easy to beat a team three times in one season.
That adage proved true on Friday evening as Goldsboro had to mount a second-half comeback to beat Eastern Wayne 64-51 in the finals of the Neuse Six 2A Conference tournament.
“Like I said all the records and all that goes out the window,” Goldsboro head coach Jamal Croom said. “Overall, it’s good basketball for the county.”
Tajmari Joyner led Goldsboro with 17 points. Joyner injured his hamstring early in the game and missed most of the first half. However, Joyner come back in the second half and was the difference in the game for the Cougars.
Ta’Korrie Faison finished with 16 points, Justice Wooten scored 11 points, while Deontay Hooker contributed 10 points.
“Taj is one of those kids that is making that second-year jump,” Croom said. “Last year was tough for him. He struggled at times, and this year, he’s one of the main guys, so just seeing his growth and success is very satisfying.”
Julien Silvestri paced the Warriors with 14 points, and Albert Brown scored 13 points
Goldsboro ends the regular season with an 18-4 overall record and a 10 record in conference play, while Eastern Wayne finishes the regular season with an 11-14 record.
Both teams will be back in action during the first round of the N.C. High School Athletic Association playoffs on Tuesday.
No. 6 Goldsboro hosts No. 27 Seaforth, while No. 25 Eastern Wayne travels to No. 8 Research Triangle.
“Records go out the window, and it’s all about who is better that night,” Croom said. “It’s survive and advance, so I feel really good about us.”
During halftime, Goldsboro sang happy birthday and honored “Uncle” Ray for his decades of support to Goldsboro athletics.
“Uncle Ray is a beacon for us, and he does so much for us,” Croom said. “He does a lot of things go noticed. He one of our biggest supporters, if not our biggest supporter.
“I look forward to seeing him on game days.”