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CREEDMOOR — The Rolesville High boys basketball squad’s six-game win streak ran into a South Granville Holiday Invitational finals buzzsaw. The event hosts put on a nearly perfect performance to repel the Rams, 84-74, for the Columbia bracket crown.
South Granville (12-0) shot 55 percent from the floor and drained five three-pointers the first 8 minutes to build a double-digit spread; however, Rolesville (8-4) would eventually cut that lead to a pair in the fourth quarter as it picked up its own pace.
The Rams roasted 32-of-64 (50 percent) field goals in response to the Vikings’ hot hands. Senior center Brandon Johnson (26 points, 15 rebounds) scored 10 of his team’s first 12 en route to all-tournament honors. He shared his spot on the rewards list with Donavan Martin (15 points, 10 rebounds, seven assists), who excelled in the up-tempo affair.
South Granville’s arc explosion began with gusto halfway into the opening period. As the long-range flings went down, it went up as far as 26-16 by the buzzer.
The lead extended to 14 before Rolesville chipped away. A Darien Long (18 points) layup beat the intermission horn and reduced the gap to 45-37. He would continue his tear by producing a dozen over the next 16 minutes.
The Vikings reigned supreme behind the 31-point thunderstrike of Bobby Pettiford. He often waved the lane clear, so he could dribble drive to penetrate and punctuate big points. Pettiford’s persistence kept South Granville out front, 60-55, three quarters into the squabble.
Long would tighten the margin to just two in the last three minutes, but Pettiford’s personal 4-0 spurt reinflated the safe cushion. Then pressure free throws denied a Ram rally.
Jaylin Mathis (nine points, eight assists, four steals) supplied Rolesville’s lone trey in the second stanza as the visitors were blasted 27-3 cumulatively beyond the arc.
Rolesville will tip off NAC 6 conference play at Wakefield at 7:30 p.m. Friday, Jan. 10.