The Diamond boys went on an early run and made the lead hold up as they cruised past Miller, 61-49, in a Spring River Valley Conference varsity hoops tilt at Diamond High School on Friday.
After winning the opening tip, the Wildcats immediately went on the offensive as they staked a 14-3 lead within the first six minutes of the game and held a 17-6 advantage at the end of the period. That run made a huge dent in the scoreboard as the Cardinals, who grabbed their footing in the second quarter, outscored the Wildcats 29-25 in the second and third quarters combined.
Credit Diamond’s press for making it difficult on the Cardinals’ offense to get into any sort of rhythm early on. The Wildcats were relentless, which forced errors and helped the Wildcats get in front.
“Our pressure man (defense) gave them trouble there in the first quarter,” Wildcats coach Brandon Rabel said. “We came out with the intensity that we needed and kind of set the tone early there. We needed several other guys to step up their intensity tonight and they did.”
The Wildcats (10-3) got a big night from 6-foot-4 senior Trent Hayes, who led the team with 18 points, followed by Brodie Bien with 13, Evan Moreland 11, Logan Myers seven, Darren Russow six, Tanner Paradeis three, Austin Singleton two and Cort Hardy one.
Dolan Parnell led the Tigers with 15 points while Riley Jack turned in 13, Jordan Jack eight, Kyle Davidson six, Jared Mallory three, Chris Collins two and Dalton Gulick two.
Diamond travels to Jasper for a Spring River Valley Conference showdown at 6 p.m. Monday.