Clover coach Dudley Lybrand spent Friday, his wife's birthday, at Nation Ford High School scouting South Pointe. The trip proved worthwhile and provided a belated birthday gift Tuesday, as Clover stunned the visiting Stallions 69-54.
The loss was South Pointe's first of the young season as the Stallions struggled with Clover's halfcourt defense the entire game.
Clover forced South Pointe into 16 first-half turnovers and built a 15-point lead with 1:30 remaining in the half before the Stallions responded with six quick points before intermission.
The Blue Eagles trailed 7-2 early, but used a 12-2 run to take control of the game. Despite South Pointe's potential from 3-point range, the Stallions never really got back into the contest.
Sign Up and Save
Get six months of free digital access to The Herald
Each time South Pointe crept within striking distance, Clover answered with a long-range bomb of its own. Chris Lindsay hit three shots from behind the arc and Aaron Miller added a couple.
Clover finished 7-of-21 from 3-point range, but each of the seven came at a critical time in the game.
South Pointe trailed 37-24 early in the third period before their last run. Tre Erby took an errant pass and picked up the loose ball for an easy floater, then added another deuce on the Stallions' next possession.
The latter score cut the lead to seven, but it was as close as South Point could get.
Lindsay and fellow Blue Eagles guard Alexander Wylie each scored 18 points to lead the charge for Clover.
The duo was equally impressive on defense, forcing the dangerous Stallions backcourt into a terrible shooting night.
Clover forward A.J. Williams had eight points off the bench, but more importantly ended the night with 11 rebounds against the larger, athletic Stallions post players.
Erby finished with a team-high 16 for the Stallions, but South Pointe never heated up from the perimeter.
"We don't have a deep, athletic team, so the way we'll win ball games this season is with our trapping defense and our shooting," said Dudley. "Tonight our halfcourt trap really worked well and we hit some huge 3-pointers at key points in the game.
"We had a lot of different kids step up at times tonight. The win is a nice confidence builder for our team."
Clover 69 South Pointe 54
Clover -- Aaron Miller 8, Alexander Wylie 18, A.J Williams 8, Chris Lindsay 18, Cody Bauer 5, Deshawn Littlejohn 8, Josh Clawson 4.
South Pointe -- Manzy Miller 4, Cory Kessler 2, Diami Gillmore 9, Breon Jaggers 2, Tre Erby 16, Jamar Banks 10, Aaron Davidson 2, Josh Bates 1, Kendell Childers 5, Jadaveous Clowney 4, Charles Holmes 1.
South Pointe 11 11 14 18 -- 54
Clover 14 17 15 23 -- 69
3-Pointers--South Pointe 3 (Miller, Erby 2), Clover 7 (Miller 2, Lindsay 3, Bauer, Wylie).Total fouls--Clover 13, South Pointe 25. Fouled out--Erby (SP).
Records: Clover 7-1; South Pointe 4-1.