Ridge View blew away Metrolina Christian Academy 87-55 Saturday in the final game of the Northeast Palmetto Challenge.
John Combs’ Blazers (5-0) overwhelmed the visiting Warriors from North Carolina with relentless defensive pressure, compelling 27 turnovers that led to numerous easy baskets. The defensive heat helped Ridge View convert 35 of its 61 shots from the field (57.4 percent).
“We believe that in most cases we are going to have the depth advantage, so our plan is to play an up-tempo game as much as possible to wear teams down,” Combs said. “Metrolina has two Division I-caliber players but we felt our depth would be the deciding factor.”
Warrior stars Josh Dominguez (27 points) and Tyrell Nelson (19) could not offset the balanced Blazers. Twelve of the 14 players Combs sent out scored, five finishing in double figures.
Point guard Jordan Portee led the way with 15 points on 7-for-7 shooting, including one 3-pointer. Tre’von Howell, Jarrell Brantley and Garrett Anderson each tallied 11 points, and Dre’Quwan Wages chipped in 10. Anderson and Wages did their work off the bench, both shooting 4-for-6 from the field. Anderson hit 3-for-4 from 3-point range.
“We don’t have that one guy who is going to consistently give us a bunch of points, which can be a good thing and a bad thing at times,” Combs said. “But I really like all the options we’ve shown so far.”
The low post rotation of Brantley, Jose Roman and Wages combined for 28 points in three quarters.
Sterling Jackson got things going with a 3-pointer from the left wing 20 seconds into the game. Metrolina’s Wesley Funderburk countered with a 3-pointer at 7:22. Jackson broke the tie at 7:14 to give the Blazers the advantage for the rest of the night.
The Warriors (5-3) cut a 19-7 deficit to 19-15 by the end of the first quarter, but Ridge View went on a 24-13 run in the second quarter for a 43-28 lead at the break.