UNIONVILLE — After losing four seniors from last season's state tournament basketball team, the inexperience of the Community Vikings showed Thursday night as the Vikings faced a very good Jackson County Blue Devil team and had trouble finding a rhythm as the Blue Devils took a 70-38 win in a Hall of Champions game.
Community (0-2) never led as the Blue Devils moved out to a first quarter lead.
Jackson County used runs of 7-0 and 6-0 to increase its advantage and led 19-8 heading to the second quarter.
Maki Fleming led the Vikings with four points in the quarter as the Blue Devils increased their lead. Jackson County outscored the Vikings 15-8 and led 34-16 at the break.
Stratton Lovvorn scored four points for Community in the third quarter as the Blue Devils kept the pressure on.
Jackson County scored 21 points and led 55-25 with one quarter to play.
Jacob Flanagan led the Vikings with five points in the fourth quarter as the Blue Devils closed out the win by outscoring Community 15-13.
Jordan Arrayo scored 26 points and Tre Monette had 23 to lead Jackson County.
Fleming and Flanagan each scored eight points to lead Community.
The Vikings finished 9-of-12 at the free throw line but could only manage one trey in the game.
"They returned everybody from last year and you can tell when you're up against a team with seniors and returning players, it's a whole different deal night and day from the young guys that we've got," Viking coach Robbie Davis said.
"They can shoot it, they can rebound it, and they're big and physical," Davis added. “We had all kinds of matchup problems because we're not as big as we've been in the past and we're a lot smaller."
Davis knows the games in November and December will serve as building blocks for district play which begins in January.
"All these games now are to see what we've got," Davis said.
"We've got one returning starter, we've got one guy that played last year off the bench, and our other junior who played some is hurt," Davis added. "Every other kid that runs out there has not played a varsity game."
"This is a first for all them. The pace of the game, the speed of the game, the competition, playing in front of a crowd."
"They're playing hard now, they just don't know where we're going," Davis said.
Community will travel to Fairview for a 7:30 p.m. game Monday night.
Jackson Co. 19 15 21 15 — 70
Community 8 8 9 13 — 38
Jackson Co.: Jordan Arroyo 26, Tre Monette 23, Kendrick Brown 6, Ramon Cuevas 4, Hayden Stacy 2, Owen Thompson 3, Alex Johnson 2, Grayson Smith 2, Drew Clinard 2, Kain Brown, Bradyn Smith, Waylon Kennedy.
Community: Maki Fleming 8, Stratton Lovvorn 7, Cole Crockett 5, Trace Broiles 2, Corey Paterick, Jacob Flanagan 8, Noah Newkirk 4, Jason Cullum 2, Landon Lovvorn 2, Ramone Gonzalez, Gunnar McGowan, Dallas Grooms, Sawyer Fults.
3-Point goals: Jackson Co. (6): Monette 5, Thompson; Community (1): S. Lovvorn.
Halftime score: Jackson Co. 34, Community 16.