A 14-0 start to the second half gave Fort Mill the cushion it needed to cruise to a 74-47 win in its Region 3-AAA opener against Chester.
The Jackets held Chester to just two third-quarter points, while building its lead from 16 points at the half to 37 points heading into the fouth quarter.
"The first three minutes of the second half was the most important of the game," said Fort Mill coach Bailey Jackson. "I told them what they needed to do to make sure they win that."
The game was the region opener for both squads trying to get back into a groove after being out of school most of the week because of the snow.
Digital Access for only $0.99
For the most comprehensive local coverage, subscribe today.
"Having not played in a week," Jackson said. "I thought we played great."
Fort Mill opened the game by looking inside to get high-percentage shots for a 5-0 lead. Defensively, Fort Mill started trapping and switching to a press.
A big dunk by junior Kevin Woods helped to get the Fort Mill crowd on its feet and allowed the Jackets to pull away.
Fort Mill's inside game was a big factor, as senior Andrew McCartney scored four of his 12 points in the second quarter. Senior Rion Heriot also had 12 to lead the Jackets.
Heriot scored eight of his 12 in the third quarter, as the Jaskets opened with a 9-0 run, before Chester called a time out to regroup.
Chester didn't hit its only field goal of the quarter until only 2:30 remained.
Chester closed the game with a 22-point fourth quarter, after Jackson went to his bench to let some of his reserves play.
Fort Mill junior Riley McGillan scored 11 points, including three 3-pointers. As a team, Fort Mill hit six from beyond the arc.
The Jackets also made the most of their free throws, hitting 26-31 from the line.
FORT MILL 74
Chester - Julius Pendergrass 11, Shgheim Wilson 10, John Rambert 6, Nathan Walker 5, Tevin Worthy 5, Trey Moore 4, Tony Wright 3, OD Mills 2, Jameston Gallman 1.
Fort Mill - Rion Heriot 12, Andrew McCartney 12, Riley McGillan 11, Jaquan Dupree 8, Jon Brown 7, Kevin Woods 6, Aaron Chapin 4, Mark Courey 4, Brandon Cessna 3, Tay Mackey 2, Worth Gregory 2.
3-pointers - Chester 2 (Worthy, Wilson), Fort Mill 6 (McGillan 3, Heriot 2, Cessna). Team fouls - Chester 22, Fort Mill 12. Fouled out - Gallman (Chester).
Records: Chester 4-8, 0-1 Region 3-AAA; Fort Mill 14-1, 1-0