Riding a hot stretch late in the season, the Hilton Head Christian Academy boys were looking for a statement win at home against rival Hilton Head Prep. Instead, the Dolphins made another statement of their own, picking up a resounding 69-45 victory Tuesday night.
The Dolphins shot the lights out, draining 12 three-pointers including 10 in the first half.
“We’re not just a one-man team. We certainly showed that tonight,” HHP coach Jerry Faulkner said. “Everyone shot the ball well in this game, but it’s hard to do that every night. I’m glad that our defense was very good tonight, particularly in the first half. That is what we hang our hat on and what we emphasize.”
The normal high-energy Eagle student section was muted early, as the Dolphins began the game on a 12-0 run.
Fresh off a game-winning shot last Friday night at Pinewood Prep, Tyrone Calloway pumped up the visiting Prep fans right from the tip, scoring a fast-break layup followed by a deep three-pointer.
Once the home vibes were taken out of the gym, Hilton Head Prep took the momentum and ran with it, exploding for 25 points in the first quarter, and following it up with 21 to take a 46-18 lead into the locker room.
“Any time you are on the road you want to get off to a good start,” Faulkner said. “After a big win against them at home we didn’t want to let them hang in this game. We needed to get off to a nice start and we did.”
Calloway wasn’t the only Dolphin having fun in the first half. Stone McDonald drained a pair of treys in the first quarter, and Luke Foley caught fire with three triples in the second. Six different Dolphins made a three-point basket in the first half, as the near flawless execution of HHP’s screens set up open shooters outside who cashed in seemingly every time.
The hot start frustrated the Eagles on offense and they started flirting with poor shots and turnovers, and the visitors just kept the snowball rolling until the lead ballooned to 28 at the half. The Dolphins then let off the gas pedal after halftime and cruised to the finish line.
Calloway capped off the regular season with 16 points, including 11 in the first period, but also spread the wealth around. McDonald was right behind with 15, Foley added 14, and Kane Eanes put up 10 with a pair of threes. Floyd Hargrove led the Eagles with 12.
HHP (20-6, 10-2) opens its SCISA 2A title defense against Shannon Forest at 5 p.m. Friday at the Sumter County Civic Center.
HHCA (12-13, 5-7) opens the state tournament against Spartanburg Day at 6:30 p.m. Friday at Heathwood Hall.
Story by Wes Kerr / Photos by Brooke Simons
Wes Kerr is a graduate of Hilton Head Island High School and Davidson College. He has a passion for statistics and analytics.
Brooke Simons is a student-athlete at Hilton Head Island High School and an aspiring journalist. She has a passion for photography and broadcasting.