Trap Game: Close district opener goes way of Chargers with pressure defense

Trojan guard Seth Grandberry tries to navigate the Covington press. Grandberry had 32 Friday night in a 67-66 loss at Bolivar.

By Thomas Sellers Jr.

A great way to kickoff the District 15-2A season is to take on the defending champions.
On Dec. 15 in the William Osteen Gymnasium, the Covington Chargers began the defense of their league title against the Millington Trojans. It was time for Trojans Head Coach Jewell Gates’ crew to test if they are ready to dethrone Covington.
After Diego Reyes gave Millington a 9-8 lead in the first quarter with a jumper, it appeared the Trojans were prepared to test Covington for 32 minutes. Then the Chargers surged ahead with a 13-1 run to close out the opening period.
Covington kept the pressure defense going and kept hitting timely shots to prevail 79-62. The Chargers transformed a 11-9 advantage into a 18-10 lead within 30 seconds with repeated steals in the backcourt.
Then the outside shooting of Covington took over the game in the second quarter with Devin Dean hitting a triple. Next up was Holden Warmath for the Chargers drilling a triple and making a layup. After Tylan Holland made a three-pointer, Covington was ahead 35-15. The Chargers held a 40-22 lead at the break.
Both teams traded baskets in the third quarter keeping the Covington advantage around the 20-point mark. Warmath was the shooting star in that period with four triples. The Chargers were ahead 61-41 heading into the fourth quarter.
Millington won the final quarter 13-11 but the Chargers returned to Tipton County with an 1-0 district record.