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Vikings vanquish Knights in holiday tourney

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CREEDMOOR The South Granville boys basketball team battled a tough Knightdale team in the second round of last week’s Holiday Invitational. Bobby Pettiford and Micah Jones combined for 40 points for the Vikings in the 60-54 win over the Knights.

South Granville did not get its signature dunk on the first play of the game, but Kobe Jones did score the first points of the contest with a long-range three.

The Knights picked up baskets by Omar Caraballo and Rodney Ellis to take a 12-4 lead over the Vikings.

Pettiford and Collin Tanner poured in the next seven points to close the gap to 12-11 midway through the first quarter.

Micah Jones connected on two long-range shots to keep the Vikings in the hunt, but trailing 19-16 at the end of the first quarter.

Wy’kise Allen gave the Vikings the lead with an old-fashioned three-point play. Micah Jones then lobbed the ball to Pettiford for an easy dunk. Micah Jones then followed with his old-fashioned three-point play to give South Granville a 26-19 lead.

Nick Boone and Ellis made shots for the Knights that tied the game at 26 apiece.

Knightdale scored to take a 29-27 lead into intermission.

There was a sense of urgency when the Vikings returned to the court to start the third quarter. Pettiford and Micah Jones began to take control of the game by scoring the next nine points for a 36-35 lead.

Tanner nailed a three from beyond the arc and Allen drove down the lane and scored.

Ellis kept Knightdale ahead with back-to-back baskets. The Knights had a 44-42 lead at the end of the third quarter.

Kobe Jones had been quiet for much of the game, but his rebound and basket to start the fourth quarter sparked the Vikings. Micah Jones followed with a short jumper. Allen rocked the Knights with an off-balance shot.

Ellis and Ayinde Taylor II kept the Knights ahead with jumpers from the wing.

Pettiford and Micah Jones made free throws to give South Granville a 52-49 lead, but Knightdale roared back to tie the game with a free throw by Ellis.

Allen put South Granville ahead 54-52 with a drive down the lane. Then, Kobe Jones’ five seconds closely guarded call gave the ball back to the Vikings with just over two minutes left in the game. Pettiford connected on a jumper for a 56-52 lead.

Ellis scored for Knightdale to close the gap to 56-54. Ellis’ points would be the last points for the Knights.

Pettiford and Micah Jones sealed the 60-54 win with free throws.

Statistics: Bobby Pettiford (19 points, eight rebounds and five assists), Daniel Morton (one rebound), Kobe Jones (five points, four rebounds, two assists and two blocks), Micah Jones (21 points, four assists and two steals), Adrian Cearnel (six rebounds and four blocks), Collin Tanner (five points and two rebounds) and Wy’kise Allen (10 points, 12 rebounds, one assist, two steals and two blocks).

The Vikings advanced to the championship game of the Columbia Bracket of the South Granville Holiday Invitational with the win.