Eight minutes of near-perfect defense were more than enough to add another win to North Mecklenburg’s perfect start.
The Vikings outscored Myers Park 20-4 in the third quarter of their 85-51 nonconference basketball victory Tuesday, turning a 39-31 halftime bulge into a rout. The Vikings (6-0) held host Myers Park to a basket and two free throws during that stretch while limiting the Mustangs access to the lane.
“We played great defense,” said North Meck guard Davion Mintz, who scored 16 of his 18 points in the first half. “We were switching off the ball really good, we got more vocal and didn’t let them penetrate the middle. That’s what really stopped them because they’re a penetrating team.”
The Vikings were quick to take advantage by getting into transition for easy baskets, with Clarence Bryce scoring 11 of his game-high 28 points in the third. North Meck kept the initiative in the fourth as well, outscoring Myers Park (3-4) 26-16 as Bryce tossed in seven points to lead the way.
“Once we started playing as a team and moving the ball around much quicker than we normally do, we choked them … and played North Meck basketball,” Mintz said.
Jaylen McManus added 11 points for the Vikings. Zaqwaun Matthews led Myers Park with 23.
North Meck and Myers Park closed the first tied at 12, but the Vikings opened the second quarter with 19-8 run to create some space. The Mustangs closed to 35-31 on Lee Houck’s 3-pointer, but North Meck’s defense turned the tide.
“We started the second half with four or five straight turnovers before we got a shot off,” Myers Park coach Wes Hepler said. “North Meck is just too good. You can’t turn the ball over and not get shots up. I don’t know what our percentage was, but we shot the ball poorly.”
North Mecklenburg – Clarence Bryce 28, Davion Mintz 18, Jaylen McManus 11, Maxwell 7, Martin 6, Middleton 4, Wacker 4, Beasley 2, Coles 2, Walker 2, Rogers 1.
Myers Park – Zaqwaun Matthews 23, Houck 7, Goble 4, Grier 4, Dockery 3, Richey 3, Flye 2, Hood 2, Reeves 2, Robertson 1.