WAYNESVILLE — The Clinton-Massie boys basketball team gave first-year head coach Todd Cook a belated Christmas present Thursday in the form of the first victory of the varsity season.

On the strength of a red-hot shooting night, the Falcons defeated Waynesville 66-54 in the first round of the Spartan Basketball Holiday Tournament at WHS.

Cook still teaches at Waynesville and is a member of the Waynesville athletic hall of fame. The former Spartans head coach had to wait 7 games to notch his initial win at Clinton-Massie.

“It was very nice,” said Cook, who was given a hometown welcome from the public address announcer prior to the game. “There was a lot of emotion coming into the game. All day long, I was getting texts from people in the community. The (Waynesville) players … some of them I’ve coached since the third grade. I respect their program, but it was nice to get the win.”

Thomas Myers powered his way to 21 points and 9 rebounds for the Falcons.

“We controlled the game for 4 quarters,” Cook said. “It was nice to be able to do that. It was nice to have balanced scoring. It was good to see the team rally around (Myers) and feed him the basketball.”

Myers was 8 for 11 from the floor. As a team, the Falcons were 25 for 45. Noah Greathouse and Trey Uetrecht both had 12 points. Greathouse had 9 rebounds while Uetrecht had 5 rebounds and 3 assists. Bailey Leforge came off the bench with a team-best 4 assists.

Noah Price led Waynesville with 19 points. But the Spartans did not have near the success shooting the ball as the Falcons. WHS was 21 for 63 from the floor, including 7 for 30 beyond the arc.

“We focused on (defense), how to get over screens,” Cook said of his squad’s defensive effort. “As soon as Price comes across midcourt and gets vision of the basket, he’s putting it up. He’s a good ballplayer.”

Massie got off to a good start but began to pull out to a double-digit lead in the second period. Two straight stickback baskets — one by Chris Demler and one by Bailey Leforge — put CM up 19-12 midway through the period. Leforge then had a steal and assist to Demler later in the quarter and the Falcons lead was 23-12.

But the Spartans were not going to gift-wrap an easy win for Cook and Co. Waynesville battled back to with 23-19 before Myers basket in the waning seconds of the half made it 25-19.

“We led by 11 then they would cut it to within 8 or 9,” Cook said. “We could never put them away.”

Neither could WHS get close enough to really scare the Falcons. The CM lead was as big as 16 (44-28) in the third but never closer than 9.

Despite making 1 of its first 6 at the free throw line in the fourth, Massie maintained a comfortable margin.

“Crucial,” Cook said of the free throw shooting. “Luckily, they (WHS) were only 5 for 16. That really was the most discouraging part. We have to get better at that (free throws).”

SUMMARY

December 29, 2016

Spartan Basketball Holiday Classic

@Waynesville High School

Clinton-Massie 66 Waynesville 54

CM 13.12.22.19…..66

WV 10.09.17.18…..54

(66) CLINTON-MASSIE (fg-3fg-ft-tp) Wolfe 1-1-4-7 Myers 8-0-3-21 Cook 3-2-1-9 Greathouse 5-1-1-12 Uetrecht 4-1-3-12 Demler 2-0-0-4 Leforge 1-0-0-2. TOTALS 25-4-12-66

(54) WAYNESVILLE (ft-3fg-ft-tp) Price 5-5-4-19 Carmichael 1-0-0-2 Bloom 1-0-0-2 Clark 7-1-0-15 Schenking 3-1-0-7 Blankenship 0-0-0-0 Warren 3-0-1-7 Hurley 0-0-0-0 Johnson 0-0-0-0. TOTALS 21-7-5-54

FIELD GOALS: CM 25-45 (Myers 8-11 Greathouse 5-7 Uetrecht 4-7 Demler 2-2); WV 21-63 (Warren 3-5)

3 PT FIELD GOALS: CM 4-13 (Cook 2-4 Greathouse 1-2 Uetrecht 1-2); WV 7-30 (Price 5-12)

FREE THROWS: CM 12-21 (Wolfe 4-6 Myers 3-5 Uetrecht 3-4); WV 5-16

REBOUNDS: CM-44 (Myers 9 Greathouse 9 Cook 7 Wofle 5 Uetrecht 5 Demler 3 Leforge 3); WV-33 (Schenking 6 Bloom 6)

ASSISTS: CM-14 (Leforge 4 Uetrecht 3 Wolfe 2); WV-10 (Price 4)

STEALS: CM-2; WV-8 (Price 4 Carmichael 3)

BLOCKED SHOTS: CM-3 (Myers 2 Greathouse 1); WV-0

TURNOVERS: CM-12; WV-6

http://aimmedianetwork.com/wp-content/uploads/sites/22/2016/12/web1_LOGO-cm-letter-6.jpg

By Mark Huber

[email protected]

Reach Mark Huber at 937-556-5765, or on Twitter @wnjsports