Eastside rolls vs. North Marion, 57-34


Eastside Rams guard Sir Jackson shoots the ball during Eastside's game against North Marion at Eastside High School in Gainesville, Fla., on Jan. 26, 2012.

Steven H. Keys/Correspondent
Published: Thursday, January 26, 2012 at 11:55 p.m.
Last Modified: Thursday, January 26, 2012 at 11:55 p.m.

The next time Eastside and North Marion face each other in basketball could be Feb. 10 in Sparr for a district title.

On Thursday, however, on the Rams' home court, it wasn't much of a contest. Eastside, ranked No. 11 in Class 5A according to MaxPreps, dominated the Colts, holding them to just three points in the third period en route to a 57-34 win in the final District 6-5A game of the regular season for both teams.

Junior point guard Sir Jackson led the Rams (16-4, 5-1 district) with 21 points and senior guard Devonta Mosley added 14 as Eastside cruised to the top seed for the upcoming district tournament at North Marion's home court.

“It's going to get tougher,” said Eastside coach Pop Williams. “They will be hosting districts, so we might meet them again on their home floor.

“At the beginning of the game I saw that they kept some of their big boys out. I don't know the reason. They came out with a smaller lineup, which I thought was unusual.”

The Colts (13-6, 3-3) never led in the game and were down by nine at the half (29-20) as Mosley scored eight of his points in the second period.

The Rams scored 12 unanswered points to open the third before North Marion's Jeremiah Thornton hit a free throw with 2:34 left in the quarter. Javon Alexander, who led the Colts with 12 points, scored a basket in the closing minute for the team's only field goal of the period, as they trailed by 22 heading into the fourth.

Two weeks ago, Eastside topped North Marion in Sparr, 45-37, to seize control in the four-team district. The Colts fell at home to district foe Palatka on Tuesday.

The Rams return to action on Saturday when they face Clearwater at the Buchholz Bobcat Scramble. The game is scheduled to start at 3:35 p.m.

“They played well tonight, but we've had a couple of injuries, a couple went down with ankle injuries,” Williams said. “Eric (Turner) has been having problems with his knee all season.”

Turner, named by Source Hoops as one of the top freshman players in the state, was held to four points.

OCALA TRINITY CATHOLIC 67, ST. FRANCIS 56: At Ocala, the Wolves got a 21-point, 14-rebound performance from center Jake Nangle, but couldn't overcome a 10-for-27 shooting performance in the second half.

With Nangle, a 6-foot-5 junior, leading the way, St. Francis (16-6) controlled the paint early and jumped to first-half leads of 18-9 and 23-14. But the Celtics (16-7), the top seed in District 6-4A, heated up late, outscored the Wolves 22-12 in the fourth quarter, and held a 37-26 overall edge on the boards.

Ray King finished with 11 points for St. Francis, which hosts Tallahassee Maclay tonight.

— Staff writer Andy Marks contributed to this report.

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