COVINGTON -- The Rockdale boys basketball team continued its pattern of starting slow before upping the pace in a 32-point, 79-47 win over Alcovy on Tuesday.
The Bulldogs (14-9 overall, 7-3 Region 2-AAAAAA) forced Alcovy (7-16, 2-9) to hand the ball over to Rockdale to take an early 6-2 lead. But the Tigers were able to tie the game at 6-6 before Rockdale regained the lead 14-9 to end the first quarter.
Alcovy came charging back to make it 16-15 before the Bulldogs shut down Alcovy's offense while going on a run. The Bulldogs went on a 15-2 run but Alcovy was able to finish strong, scoring the final two baskets to trail 31-21 at the half.
"We have to start games better," Rockdale head coach Al Williams said. "That's something that we're struggling with. I'm concerned about it, but I promise that we're working in it daily. My problem is that when you get out of region, if you take that first quarter off we're going to lose the ball game, putting ourselves in a deep hole. It's mental and it starts with the coach."
Rockdale's defense stayed strong, keeping the Tigers down while its offense flourished to increase the lead to 50-34 to close out the third frame.
Even though Rockdale scored 29 points, the Bulldogs allowed Alcovy to score more than they wanted.
"We didn't meet our defensive goals," Williams said. "We have some stringent goals. We wanted to hold them to 10 in the third quarter and they had 13. We have some work to do. We try to be goal-oriented, we have some work to do."
While the Bulldogs may not have achieved their goal of keeping the Tigers to under 10 points in the fourth quarter, they did not allow any Alcovy player to score in double figures while having three players in double figures themselves.
Pacing the Tigers in scoring were Marquis Sims (9), Marcus Beasley (8) and Micah Burch (8) with C.J. Wilson (18), Darious Mitchell (11) and Conner Ferrell (11) scoring in double digits.
"We preach and teach that it takes three," Williams said. "Normally we struggle on what I call that third scorer."