The 2021 portion of the schedule is already off to a positive start for the Parklane boys, who picked up a 51-40 home win over Brookhaven Academy Tuesday evening.
The game marked the final non-conference test for the Pioneers who open 1-5A play Friday at home against Madison-Ridgeland Academy.
“I thought that we played well against Brookhaven Academy,” Parklane head coach Josh Bass said. “They are a well-coached team. We are playing really well right now and I hope that we can continue, continue to build and continue to get better. The thing that I am most-proud of is the team effort. We are playing unselfishly.”
That unselfish form of play paid dividends in the first half. A total of six different Pioneers registered points including Jacob Gazzo who led the way with nine of his game-high 20 in the first two quarters alone.
He scored from every facet including from downtown, implementing a 3-point shot into his repertoire. Parklane led 22-16 at the half.
Despite a comeback effort by the visitors, continued solid play on both ends of the floor in the third and fourth quarters helped keep the Pioneers ahead of the Cougars as they pulled out the victory.
PA girls fall to Cougars
Following a holiday break, the Parklane girls wanted to get back to playing their brand of basketball. However they could not get into a consistent enough rhythm offensively Tuesday evening as they fell 52-34 to the visiting Brookhaven Academy Cougars.
“The Brookhaven Academy girls are a great team coached by Ron Kessler and he's just got a great team with size, shooters, great defense and great offense, they have the whole package,” said Bass, who also coaches the girls team. “We knew that it was going to be a tough game and we just shot poorly, we just shot the basketball poorly and we are a good shooting team most nights.”
Seven different players scored for the Pioneers, however none of them recorded double-digit points. Both Haven Hollis and Liberty Gillihan finished with eight points apiece.
Parklane fell behind early and was playing catch up for the remainder of the contest. “We shot poorly from the 3-point line, shot poorly from the free throw line,” Bass said. “And we cannot beat a good team with the shooting percentages that we had.”
The game marked the end of non-conference play for the Pioneers.
Now the focus shifts toward MAIS Conference 1-5A opener at home against MRA.
“We definitely needed to play those tough games like Brookhaven Academy to try and prepare for our hard district coming up,” Bass said. “MRA on Friday is going to be a tough game and it always is. I think that we are going to be competitive throughout our district over the next few weeks.”