COVINGTON — Eastside and Henry County got off to slow starts before the Eagles started picking up their game while keeping the Warhawks down in their 68-49 win on Tuesday.
Although the Eastside (3-1) won by 19 points, Eagles head coach Gregory Freeman was not pleased with his team’s performance.
“We played raggedy. I’m not happy and they know I’m not happy,” he said. “I didn’t like the way we were making mistakes. We threw the ball away a lot, missed a lot of easy shots, we didn’t rotate on defense. You name it, we did all that stuff.”
One aspect of the Eagles team that Freeman was happy with was the first-half play of Marquise Sims, who led all scorers with 16 points.
With the Eagles trailing 16-14, Sims hit a 3-pointer at the buzzer to put the Eagles up 17-16. He continued to pace Eastside sinking the first basket, a 3-pointer, of the second quarter. Sims hit four 3-pointers in the first half scoring 14 points as they took a 38-26 lead.
“I thought Marquis Sims did a good job in the first half,” Freeman said. “He came in ready but that’s his job. He was the only person in the first half that played the way I expected him to.”
Eastside continued to dominant the second half forcing 18 turnovers while outrebounding Henry County 26-12.
The Eagles used those turnovers and rebounds to their advantage in the third frame scoring eight points before the Warhawks added to their tally on the way to a 58-35 lead.
Henry County closed the gap in the fourth quarter outscoring the Eagles 14-10 against mostly bench players.
“I wanted to play a different game but the sluggish start forced us to play that way to build the lead,” Freeman said. “You want to see them play a different style of basketball every night. I was really disappointed in our execution in the first half. We have a veteran ball club and they know we they have to come out and preform.”
Even though Treyvon Francis had the second highest points for Eastside, Freeman was disappointed because he knows he could have done better.
“The bar is so high for Treyvon Francis that when he doesn’t come out and preform the way I expect him to is so disappointing. I need for him to understand that’s how he has to play on a night in, night out basis. He has to play the right way,” Freeman said. “He had a 30-point outburst against Rockdale. He has to understand that when you set the bar that high you have to play up to that level.”