A few weeks after getting blown out at Wando, the Goose Creek boys basketball team exacted a little revenge on their own home court in Friday night's region 7-AAAA showdown.
The Gators delivered a barrage of long-range shots in en route to a 59-42 victory. The win avenged a 74-40 loss on Jan. 21 and improved Goose Creek to 21-2 overall and 6-1 in region play. Wando dropped to 18-5 overall and 5-1 in league play.
Wando has remaining region games with Stratford and West Ashley, while Goose Creek has only Cane Bay remaining on the league schedule.
Goose Creek senior point guard Dantez Bennamon scored 16 points and fellow senior guard Chris Singleton added 15 to propel the Gators. Jordan McElveen added 10 points for Goose Creek, which connected on 12 3-pointers in the game with Singleton hitting five shots from beyond the arc.
As good as the Gators were offensively, however, it was the play on the other end of the floor that impressed Goose Creek coach Blake Hall.
"I thought the defensive effort and the rebounding effort was the difference in the game," said Hall. "Wando has a bunch of guys that can score, and to hold them to 42 points speaks well to our effort on defense. We limited them to one shot on a lot of possessions and that was a big difference in this game."
Wando opened the game with a 10-1 spurt, but Goose Creek got back in the game with the long ball, hitting three consecutive 3-pointers over a three-minute stretch to tie the game at 10.
"A lot of these guys played in Columbia (in the AAAA state championship game) last year so they've been in a lot of big games," said Hall. "The slow start really didn't fluster our guys. We just have to keep playing."
The teams were tied at 11 after one quarter and the 3-point barrage continued for Goose Creek into the second quarter. Singleton hit a pair of treys to give the Gators a 20-13 lead with 6:07 remaining in the period.
Goose Creek connected on seven 3-pointers in the first half and held a commanding 29-17 lead heading into the break.
The Gators continued to set the pace from beyond the arc, opening the third quarter with back-to-back bombs to open up a 35-19 advantage.
Wando used an 8-0 run late in the third to trim the margin to 38-29, but the Gators upped the lead back to 11 at 42-31 heading into the final period. The Warriors could get no closer than 10 points in the fourth quarter.
"The first game was an eye-opener for this team and I feel like we have been a much better ball club since that first game with Wando," said Hall. "Hopefully we can continue this roll that we've been on."
Jamez Rogers was the lone Warrior to reach double figures, scoring 13 points.
In the girls game, Goose Creek defeated Wando, 53-27, to capture the region 7-AAAA title. Goose Creek improved to 21-2 overall and 7-0 in region seven play.
Freshman forward Erika Broughton scored 24 points and freshman guard Mariah Linney added 11 to pace the Gators. Goose Creek led 15-0 after the first quarter and opened up a 26-6 lead by halftime.
Wando 11 6 14 11-42
Goose Creek 11 18 13 17-59
Wando (42): Jamez Rogers, 13, Pegram 8, Glover 7, Moore 8, Majewski 4, Kimbrell 1, Behrens 1.
Goose Creek (59) - Dantez Bennamon 18, Chris Singleton 15, Jordan McElveen 10, Whittaker 8, Robinson 6, Kinlaw 2.