MOORE — Norman North tipped off against Moore on Friday with revenge on its mind. The Timberwolves lost to the Lions by three points earlier in the season but bounced back on Friday, jumping out fast against the Lions and holding them off late 83-73 at North’s gym.
North jumped on top in the first quarter, but was only able to build a 36-30 lead at halftime. That was the same margin that held going into the fourth quarter, but that was when North took control of the game.
But it was the Lions missing 17 free throws that really hurt them.
“It’s tough,” Moore coach Aaron Howell said. “Especially when every day all we do is shoot free throws and people take it half-hearted. It bit them in the butt today. With the real ball players, I won’t have to mention it. But as a coach I will definitely make that a point this coming week.
The Timberwolves were led by Lindy Waters, who turned in a huge night. The sophomore finished with 22 points, while Trae Young added 20 for North, which won its eighth straight game.
Jaylin Wilson paced the Lions with a game high 27 points. Brayden Powell added 13 in the loss.
Moore played shorthanded after losing the services of junior point guard Dante Butler, who was dismissed from the team. He was replaced in the starting lineup by Cole Oliver and off the bench by Christian Ohler..
“We are playing great team ball right now,” Howell said. “The ball is moving . We are getting more out of our inside game and I like how we’re playing right now with the group of guys that we have.”
Since the end of last season, Howell has had to clean house of remove a few players from his team.
“You’re going to get it or you’re going to get gone,” Howell said. “It’s that simple. We give every opportunity. I’m the nicest guy in the world. But you’re not going to destroy the family we’re trying to build. That’s not meant for anyone in particular. But we’re teaching family. We’re playing family ball right now and I like it.”