Tigers pull away with strong second half

By Staff
Mike Self, FCT Sports Editor
RED BAY – Justin Page's hot shooting set the stage for a strong second half by Red Bay, and Chris Frame helped seal the deal with a big fourth quarter as the Tigers pulled away for a 62-45 win over Belgreen on Thursday.
Red Bay (9-11) trailed by eight midway through the second quarter, thanks in large part to a huge first half by Belgreen's Lucas Albert.
Derrick Miller and Page hit back-to-back threes to trim the lead to two, and Page stroked a jumper and another trey moments later to cap a 13-4 run that gave the Tigers a 28-27 halftime lead.
"We didn't really play well until right before the half, so I told our guys we were pretty lucky to be up by one," Red Bay coach Greg Cash said. "I just told them to keep playing hard and putting pressure on Belgreen to try and wear them down."
The Tigers' momentum carried over into the second half, but Taylor Hester scored eight points in the third quarter to help keep Belgreen close. Red Bay led 41-36 after three.
Frame stepped up with nine points in the fourth quarter as Red Bay closed the game on a 21-9 run. All told, the Tigers out-scored Belgreen 34-18 in the second half.
"When you put constant pressure on a team, they eventually start to wear down a little," said Cash, whose team shot 54 percent from the field in the second half and forced 17 turnovers on the night. "I thought we came up with a few big steals in the second half, and we got some good looks at the basket."
Most of Red Bay's 13 second-half field goals came in the paint, particularly in the fourth quarter. Ethan Davis opened the fourth with a basket down low, and Pablo Makepeace followed with a steal and layup to push the lead to nine.
Frame capped off an 8-0 run with back-to-back layups, making it 49-36 with roughly four minutes remaining.
Davis put the icing on the cake with a three-point play to make it 57-41 with 1:09 left.
"Our post guys did a good job of passing to each other tonight," Cash said. "We were able to finish some three-point plays inside, which we hadn't been doing lately. Ethan Davis played well down low, and Chris Frame had a big night."
Albert came out hot in the first half, hitting back-to-back threes late in the first quarter and another trey early in the second as Belgreen opened up a 16-11 lead.
Shane Fretwell buried a three and Hester made a basket to give the Bulldogs their largest lead of the night at 23-15 before Red Bay got going.
Albert had 16 points in the first half but was held without a field goal in the second half.
"Lucas had a monster first half," Cash said. "He stepped out there and made a few threes, so the first thing we had to do was stop him. We did a better job in the second half."
Albert finished with 17 points to lead all scorers, and Hester added 12 for Belgreen.
Frame led Red Bay with 16 points, and Page added 13. Grant Fancher had 10, and Davis added seven. Makepeace finished with six, and Jesse James added five.