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Cyclones head into break with a win

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By Travis Jenkins

The Chester boys basketball team finished the pre-region portion of its schedule the same way it began it…with a win.

The Cyclones went on the road Wednesday night and came away with a 69-55 victory over Clinton. Chester had no problem with a slow start (which has occurred on a few occasions recently) as they put 21 on the board in the first quarter to build a seven-point lead and built that up to 10 by halftime.

“I believe if we play like (that), we will be a tough team to play against,” said Coach Sebastian Hopkins.

Coming off a loss to AAAAA White Knoll that Hopkins said represented his team’s worst effort and performance of the year, the coach was pretty much happy with every aspect of Wednesday’s game.

“I think we responded well from the previous game we played against White Knoll,” he said. “I thought our guys communicated better on the defensive end. We rebounded well and we committed less turnovers. I thought our guys were very focused.”

Hopkins believes it was a quality victory given the opponent. He said Clinton is very athletic and has a lot of talent back from last year’s playoff squad. Chester, in general, played an extremely challenging out-of-region schedule, loaded with AAAA and AAAAA competition. He thinks that will have his team ready for the start of region play next month.

Quay Hardin led the way offensively for Chester with 20 points, while T.J. Hollis and Leon Goldsborough added 13 apiece. Niquavian Coleman had nine as Chester improved to 8-2 overall.

The Chester girls team kept it very close throughout before falling to the Lady Red Devils 43-35. The Cyclones boys and girls will be participating in the Andrew Jackson Christmas Tournament next Friday and Saturday. The girls open play at 3 p.m. Friday, with the boys playing at 4:30 against Marlboro County.