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Reserves propel Gators to rout of Warren Central

As a reward for their hard work, and to give his normal lineup some rest after a difficult set of games, Vicksburg High boys’ basketball coach Kelvin Carter gave his reserves a start and some extended time on Saturday.

They paid him back by getting the Gators off on the right foot and sending them on to an easy victory.

Datrick Anderson — one of four backups making a rare start — drilled three 3-pointers and finished with nine points, Anthony Lumpkin scored 10, and the Gators hammered Warren Central 75-30.

It was Vicksburg’s second game in about 15 hours, after they beat Region 4-5A rival Ridgeland on Friday night.

“We were so concentrating on trying to win that district game. (Warren Central coach Bruce Robinson) does a great job, but we felt like they were a little down and we would be all right if we come in and maximize our effort on offense and defense,” Carter said. “Those guys make our starters go. Those guys, we practice with them every day. For them to get an opportunity to play and they did well when they got out there, that’s always good.”

Anderson and Lumpkin started along with Sean Hardy, Lacaris Johnson and Rashan Cole. Hardy, the team’s point guard, is normally in the starting lineup, and Johnson and Lumpkin are in the playing rotation.

Anderson gets less playing time, but made the most of it. His first 3-pointer was part of a 10-0 run to open the game, and he made two more in the third quarter as the Gators (9-5) pulled away.

“It’s exciting to see everybody on the team play,” said Hardy, who finished with 10 points, four rebounds and six assists.

Vicksburg’s normal starters took the first quarter off. When they entered at the start of the second, they immediately turned the nine-point lead the others had built for them into a commanding 37-11 advantage at halftime.

Taylon Smith drained two 3-pointers in the first 90 seconds of the second quarter, and a 16-3 run midway through put the game out of reach.

Among the second wave of players, Smith finished with a game-high 17 points and Kameron Brown scored 10. Jaden Williams also had a huge game with eight points, 18 rebounds and five blocked shots.

K.J. Jackson was Warren Central’s leading scorer, with just seven points. Darrton Allen and Del’Jayvien Harried scored six apiece.

“That was a lift, but those guys can play,” Carter said. “It’s just a lift whenever your guys come off the bench and can continue what you’ve got going on. Those guys are very dependable night in and night out.”

About Ernest Bowker

Ernest Bowker is The Vicksburg Post's sports editor. He has been a member of The Vicksburg Post's sports staff since 1998, making him one of the longest-tenured sports reporters in the paper's 137-year history. The New Jersey native is a graduate of LSU. In his career, he has won more than 50 awards from the Mississippi Press Association and Associated Press for his coverage of local sports in Vicksburg.

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