Sweetwater boys basketball pulls away from Gunter to win Anson Holiday Tournament

·2 min read
Sweetwater post Harrison Foster drives in against Gunter on Tuesday, Dec. 28.
Sweetwater post Harrison Foster drives in against Gunter on Tuesday, Dec. 28.

Through the first month and a half of the season, the Anson Holiday Tournament was a high point for the Sweetwater boys’ basketball team.

Sweetwater won all four of its games in the tourney to finish first place. The Mustangs beat Gunter 59-47 in the championship game after beating Merkel, Idalou and Farwell earlier in the tournament.

Sweetwater is now 13-8 overall.

Sweetwater's Malik Brown secures a loose ball against Gunter on Tuesday, Dec. 28.
Sweetwater's Malik Brown secures a loose ball against Gunter on Tuesday, Dec. 28.

“It’s big for us,” Sweetwater coach Evan Grantham said. “We’ve had some ups and downs. We have a young team, and we’re just trying to build momentum and trying to learn to play together. That was a big-time win for us.”

The Mustangs didn’t get their double-digit lead until late in the game.

It was a back-and-forth contest that Gunter led in the third quarter. But midway through the period, Sweetwater went on a run, finishing the third with a 39-32 lead. The Mustangs didn’t look back and pulled away to win by 12 points.

Sweetwater’s offense ran through Harrison Foster.

Sweetwater senior Harrison Foster shoots a jumper against Gunter on Tuesday, Dec. 28.
Sweetwater senior Harrison Foster shoots a jumper against Gunter on Tuesday, Dec. 28.

The senior post finished the game with 21 points, a team high. Gunter had trouble with Foster’s size and length in the paint, allowing several inside buckets.

“For him to go in and try to take over the game, that fueled us a little bit,” Grantham said. “He did a really good job of using the glass.”

Foster added, “Our game plan is around getting me the ball. Whenever it comes to crunch time, you have to make your shots.”

Sweetwater's Brendin Atkins attempts an inside shot against Gunter on Tuesday, Dec. 28.
Sweetwater's Brendin Atkins attempts an inside shot against Gunter on Tuesday, Dec. 28.

In addition to Foster’s efforts, several other Mustangs were key in a well-spread scoring effort. Seven of the team’s nine players scored, and Malik Brown and Damarrius Walker just missed out on double figures, each scoring nine points.

Sweetwater earned its spot in the Gold Bracket with wins over Merkel (48-40) and Idalou (59-46) on Monday. The Mustangs then beat Farwell 57-46 on Tuesday to set up the Gunter matchup.

Sweetwater freshman Korda Moore shoots a jumper against Gunter on Tuesday, Dec. 28.
Sweetwater freshman Korda Moore shoots a jumper against Gunter on Tuesday, Dec. 28.

In what has been a roller coaster first few weeks of the season for the Mustangs, this tourney win could be a catalyst as the heat of conference play still lies ahead.

“(Gunter) is a really good team, and it was really good for us to get that win,” Grantham said. “I really think it’s important for our confidence.”

Elsewhere in the tournament, Merkel went 2-2 to finish second in the Silver Bracket. Seymour placed first in the bracket. And the Wylie JV team beat Idalou to finish first in the Bronze Bracket.

Sweetwater guard Jadyn Forbes attempts a layup on a fast break against Gunter on Tuesday, Dec. 28.
Sweetwater guard Jadyn Forbes attempts a layup on a fast break against Gunter on Tuesday, Dec. 28.

Sweetwater 59, Gunter 47

SWEETWATER — Harrison Foster 21, Malik Brown 9, Damarrius Walker 9, Jadyn Forbes 7, Korda Moore 6, Stason Hernandez 4, Brendin Atkins 3.

GUNTER — Kenny Burkholder 24, Mason Peacock 7, Kaiden Pines 5, Brady Harris 4, Ethan Sloan 3, Preston Tarpley 2, Jake Schafer 2.

Carson Field is the area sports reporter for the Abilene Reporter-News. He covers primarily Big Country high school sports. If you appreciate locally driven news, you can support local journalists with a digital subscription to ReporterNews.com" target="_blank">digital subscription to reporternews.com.

Sweetwater's Malik Brown prepares to take an inside shot against Gunter on Tuesday, Dec. 28.
Sweetwater's Malik Brown prepares to take an inside shot against Gunter on Tuesday, Dec. 28.

This article originally appeared on Abilene Reporter-News: Sweetwater Mustangs go 4-0 at Anson Holiday Tournament

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