CORDOVA — On Wednesday, the Rockingham Middle boys and girls basketball teams traveled to in-county opponent Cordova Middle on a mission to keep their undefeated records intact.
Both Rockingham teams came away with road victories with the Lady Rockets winning 41-12 and the Rockets taking home a 51-13 win.
In the girls game, the Lady Cavaliers managed to create some early shot opportunities, but struggled to find the basket, allowing Rockingham to make an early run and put the game away quickly.
Once again, Madisen Jackson was a big playmaker for the Rockets. After Audicy Rush went 1-of-2 from the free throw line for the game’s first point, Jackson delivered a perfect bounce pass in the lane to Kaniah Little for an easy layup.
The two paired up to score again with an almost identical play on Rockingham’s ensuing possession, followed by a floater by Jackson moments later to put the Lady Rockets ahead 7-0 with 6:50 remaining in the opening quarter.
The game continued to be very physical with both teams contributing numerous tie-ups, steals and blocks, resulting in a three-and-a-half minute drought that ended when Jackson once again found Little for an easy two, this time on fast break following a Cordova turnover.
A pair of baskets from Jackson and Aaliyah McRae extended Rockingham’s lead to 13-0 at the end of the first quarter.
Rockingham coach Wandesha Jackson called for a personnel change to start the second, replacing three of her five starters, but the Lady Rockets continued to grow their lead.
Addison Butler, Kaylan Parsons, Little and Rush each contributed baskets to a 12-0 second quarter start that put the visiting team ahead 25-0. Cordova’s Aliah West, who had several shots narrowly rim out in the first half, finally found the net with a three-point shot with 50 seconds remaining until the break to avoid the shutout.
Scoring slowed in the second half as Rockingham and Cordova each began subbing in players. The Lady Rockets outscored Cordova 16-9 to finish with a 41-12 victory.
Rush finished the game with 9 points for Rockingham, Little netted 8, Parsons scored 7, Jackson, Butler and McRae each had 4, Alley Crouch added 3, and Erin Drumwright ended with 2.
With the win, the Lady Rockets improved to 5-0 on the season and have a half-game lead for the top spot in the conference over East Hoke (4-0). Cordova dropped to 0-5.
The boys game mirrored the girls game in many ways. Despite several shot opportunities, many Cordova first-half shot attempts just narrowly missed their mark allowing Rockingham to pull away quickly.
Much like they did in their 46-19 blowout of Anson a week prior, the Rockets used their size advantage to dominate the rebound game against Cordova and take advantage of numerous second-chance opportunities.
The first five baskets of the game were netted by five different Rockets. B.J. Hinson, Chance Crowder, Andrae Streeter, Cameron Coley and Kerick Hairston each contributed to a 10-0 run to start the game. Cordova closed out the opening period with a pair of free throws from Josiah Gilbert and another one from Javeion Littlejohn, but still trailed the visiting Rockets 10-3 heading into the second quarter.
The Rockets outscored Cordova 12-1 in the second quarter, but instead of the points being spread around, Coley scored 8 of Rockingham’s dozen on his own – all from putbacks. The run sent the Rockets into the break with a 22-4 advantage.
Rockingham more than doubled its total in the third quarter when it outscored the host Cavaliers 25-2 with Graham Odom leading the way. Odom scored 10 points, including two three-pointers, in the third stanza with Coley adding to his game-high scoring efforts with six more.
Cordova found some success in the fourth quarter as it outscored its guests 7-4 in the final 10 minutes.
Coley finished the afternoon with a game-high 16 points for Rockingham. Odom netted 12, Streeter added 6, CJ Covington and Hinson each scored 5, Crowder had 3, and Hairston and Devin Haynes each ended with 2.
Rockingham (5-0) will host rival Hamlet Middle (1-4) on Monday with the girls starting at 4 p.m. and the boys game following.