POCOMOKE- In a highly anticipated early season match-up, it was the Pocomoke boys’ varsity basketball team making a big statement with a resounding 72-59 win over county rival Stephen Decatur at home on Monday.
From the time the 2015-2016 schedule was announced, the game between Pocomoke and Decatur in December was circled by many as a pivotal contest early in the season. Both teams are stacked and will challenge for the Bayside South and ultimately the Bayside Conference championships, but for one day at least, it was Pocomoke that made the loudest statement.
The Seahawks had cruised to an early 5-0 record, including 3-0 in the conference, and had rarely been challenged through the first weeks of the season. Pocomoke, meanwhile, was on a parallel course, stacking up early wins with the rivalry game with Decatur looming just before the holiday break.
On Monday, the irresistible force met the immovable object and it was the former that emerged with the big early win. Pocomoke gave up considerable size to the Seahawks, but made up for the difference with athleticism, up tempo and solid perimeter shooting. Nonetheless, the game wasn’t decided until the second half.
After a back-and-forth first half, Decatur led by one at the break. Pocomoke went on a 9-0 run early in the third to begin to pull away from the Seahawks. Nonetheless, Decatur would not go quietly and chipped away at the lead behind a rejuvenated Torrey Brittingham, a former Seahawk who had transferred to Wicomico and then back to Decatur for his senior year.
Brittingham missed the early part of the season after a car accident, but returned last week for a modest four points in a win over Washington in his first action since last year. On Monday against Pocomoke, Brittingham provided a brief third quarter spark with a pair of three pointers and scored 12 of his game-high 22 points in the fourth, but it wasn’t enough to overcome Pocomoke and the Warriors pulled away for the decisive 72-59 win in the battle of Bayside South heavyweights.