The Paris High School basketball team had a busy week following their brief stint at No. 1 before losses in tournament play and against Lamar.
Now in the meat of their schedule, the Eagles are trying to regain the form that they put on display during their early season run. It would not get any easier this week as they played on the road at Cedarville and Charleston before returning home for a Saturday make-up game against local rival Subiaco Academy.
The Eagles were a heavy favorite going into Cedarville, but it was a night they will not likely forget. Sloppy inconsistent play kept the game close, and coming to the end, the Eagles had to hit a bucket late to preserve a 63-61 win.
Four Eagles scored in double figures, with Race Taylor leading the team with his 19 point performance. Kris Graham added 13 points and five steals, Talik Robinson had 12 points and Tyler Atchison had 10.
After under performing at Cedarville, hopes were that they were just looking ahead to their road matchup against Charleston.
In the first half, it was apparent that was not the case, as the Eagles came out flat and trailed by 10 after one period of play. The second quarter was the only period Paris scored more than 13 points, putting up 19 and holding the Tigers to 12, closing the gap to three at the half.
In the second half, it was balanced, with the Eagles still trailing by three heading to the fourth quarter. For almost the entire period, Paris could not break below a six point deficit. Charleston would hit their free throws down the stretch and pull away for the 67-58 win. Race Taylor again led the way with 15 points while Talik Robinson added 14 points and eight rebounds. Tyler Atchison scored 11 points followed by Kris Graham with nine.
The week was not over for the Eagles after the loss Friday night. They had to return home for the much-anticipated return of the local rival game against Subiaco Academy. The Saturday matchup is a reschedule from the weather cancellation eight days earlier.
As always, Subiaco brought a loud student section and the PHS students did not disappoint, showing up in good numbers, cheering and chanting throughout. The loud and boisterous atmosphere was just what the Eagles were looking for, as they came out of the gates hot, taking a big lead early. The Eagles would take a nine point lead into the half, holding the Trojans to only 18 first half points.
From there, the Eagles lost their way, failing to score, making poor decisions, and adding to their game total of 23 turnovers. Subiaco would shoot significantly better in the second half and played through foul trouble to take their first lead in the fourth period. Paris, who thrives on pressure and chaos to force turnovers, would only score four transition points on the evening and never took advantage of the Trojans playing with four fouls. Over half of their shots on the evening were from behind the three point arc where they only shot four of 25 for 16 percent.
Subiaco Academy hit clutch shots late, including twice when Tyler Komp was alone behind the arc. Turnovers doomed the Eagles, who would fall 50-46 in a game decided late.
Talik Robinson had a double-double, scoring 14 points and grabbing 15 rebounds. Race Taylor would also score 14 points and Preston Drewry added eight.
Paris will look to turn things around against Booneville and Ozark this week at home. The boys will tip in the early matchup at 6 p.m. on Friday night following the Winter Court ceremonies pregame. The Eagles fall to 12-5 on the season and are now 4-2 in conference play.