Demopolis falls to Neshoba in season opener

Antoine Collier had seven assists for Demopolis Monday.

Antoine Collier had seven assists for Demopolis Monday.

Demopolis kept pace with the top ranked team in Mississippi’s Class 5A for much of two quarters Monday before watching Neshoba Central run away with a 70-45 win.

“We started out really good. The intensity was up. The numbers hurt us. We couldn’t go that deep because the numbers hurt us,” Demopolis coach Ashley Allen said of his team’s first effort.

Trey Haskin takes a shot Monday against Neshoba.

Trey Haskin takes a shot Monday against Neshoba.

The Tigers were without nearly half their roster for the season opener but put together a game effort early, pounding the ball continuously into senior Josh Moore to match Neshoba’s scoring pace.

“Josh is going to help us. We know that that’s our identity to get the ball down low and work from the inside out.,” Allen said

But the Tigers struggled to find complementary scoring options and frequently turned the ball over in transition as the Rockets soared to a 32-18 second half run.

“We would break the press and then we would kind of shatter box,” Allen said. “We haven’t been playing together. For these guys, it’s their first time playing together since about ninth grade. We’ve got to get these guys in shape. We’ve got to get these guys from football. And we’ve got to get these guys eligible. On Dec. 17, we should have a full squad and that’s what I’m excited about.”

Moore led all scorers with 24 points and 12 rebounds. Ladarius Adams added nine points and 16 rebounds for the Tigers.

Chayton York led Neshoba with 19 points and five steals while C.J. Ruffin added 18 points. Jaquan Dotson had 11 points, six rebounds and five steals. Grant Willis also had 11 points.

Demopolis is set to play again Dec. 4 at Thomasville.