Brownwood honors memory of teammate Wasson prior to victory

The Brownwood offense was able to muster just two points in the fourth period, but the defense yielded only seven points during that span as the Lions held on for a 38-35 victory over Eastland Tuesday night at Warren Gym.

The Lions’ only points of the fourth period came on a bucket by Corleone Pressley with 3:10 left. Neither team scored the rest of the way, with Eastland’s three-pointer at the buzzer clanging off the front of the rim.

“It’s one of those things we’ve talked about, getting over the hurdle and finishing and closing out games,” said Lions first-year head coach Nadir Dalleh. “We had an eight- or 10-point lead and we gave it back. We got a little bit lazy like we thought they were going to lay down a little bit and that’s not going to happen.”

The Lions (4-4) — coming off a fourth-place effort at the San Angelo Central tournament over the weekend — received nine points each from Sean Yoder and McLane Moore, eight from Corleone Pressley, five from Blake Bronniman, four from Xavier Porter, two from Blaine Hughes and one point from Tristin Revada.

Eastland was led by the 21-point effort of 6-4 post Peyton Bird, while the rest of the Mavericks mustered a combined 14 points, with no other player contributing more than six.

“Defense is big with me,” Dalleh said. “Our defense is a heck of a lot better, but our help side defense is something we still need to work on. They’ve played zone for two or three years now and we have to get over that and play man-to-man. We also rebounded well tonight and that’s something we’ve worked on.”

Tied at 8 after one quarter, the Lions opened a 24-16 halftime advantage that stood at 36-28 through three periods.

Eastland shaved the deficit to 29-28 with 4:24 left in the third, but the Lions scored the final seven points of the quarter. Bronniman began the run at 2:18 with a three-pointer, then chipped in another bucket before Hughes scored with 57 seconds left.

The Mavericks again crept within a point with 4:11 left in the game, but Pressley’s bucket a minute later proved to be the difference. Brownwood had chances to secure the game down the stretch, but missed its last seven free throw attempts.

“Free throw shooting should have cost us the Brady game in San Angelo but it didn’t, and it could have cost us tonight as well,” Dalleh said. “We had a chance to make some late when we were tired and we have to work on that.”

Prior to the contest, the Lions honored the memory of teammate D’Avion Wasson, who drown in September, with a moment of silence in which fans held up Wasson’s jersey number 13.

“It was something that needed to be done and something we’ll remember the rest of the year,” Dalleh said. “It’s a small community and the kids are really close. The family is important to these kids and this team.”

The Lions also began the game with just four players on the court, as Wasson would have been the starting point guard this season.

Brownwood is back in action Thursday through Saturday at the Hamilton tournament.