Hinds AHS rolls over East Marion|Prep basketball

Published 12:00 am Wednesday, February 18, 2009

UTICA — Showtime came early for the Hinds AHS War Dawgs.

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Thursday, 8:30 p.m. at Richton

Hinds AHS vs. Scott County

Up 35 points in the second quarter, twins Erik and Derek Burks decided to have some fun at the expense of the East Marion Eagles.

Derek Burks was way out in front of an exasperated Eagle squad when, instead of going on in for the layup, decided to flip the ball under-handed off the glass, setting up a perfect dunking opportunity for his twin Erik. The play worked to perfection as Erik slammed the dunk home and the small gathering of fans at Hinds Community College Coliseum roared their approval.

The basket put the War Dawgs (26-2) up 47-10 with 3:10 left in the second quarter as Hinds went on to an easy South State Class 2A satellite win, 94-42.

“We practice that all the time at the house, but that’s the first time we’ve tried it in a game,” Erik Burks said.

The dunk was two of Erik Burks’ 25 points on the night. Twelve different War Dawgs scored, including all five players off the bench.

Derek Burks had just six points but he had five assists, most going to his twin.

“I was just looking to pass it off. I’m glad the dunk play worked. It’s the first time we did it in a game,” Derek Burks said.

Hinds coach Keith Williams was glad the Burks twins could enjoy themselves because things are about to get serious Thursday night when the War Dawgs go to the South State 2A Tournament at Richton. Their likely opponent will be Scott Central, a team that eliminated them at the 2007 South State Tournament and then went on to win the 2A state title.

“This was fun for our young guys, especially our ninth graders who we moved up. I was pleased with our team play. The twins got to have their fun and Keeslee Stewart shot it well. And our other two starters in Trevis Thomas and Cornelius Harris played well.

“Now we’ve got Scott Central and two years ago, they put us out at South State. The year before that, we went four overtimes with them. We won that one and that was the last time we went to the (Mississippi) Coliseum,” Williams said.

The War Dawgs’ last appearance at the state tournament was in 2006, where they lost in the 2A semifinals in triple overtime to eventual state champion Coahoma County, which was led by current Mississippi State sophomore forward Ravern Johnson.

Hinds may be a quicker team this year and with the special connection between the twins, a more cohesive team.

“We’ve bonded better,” Derek Burks said of his team. “We remember last year being unbeaten and No. 1 in the state and then losing two straight at South State. That has made us hungry.”

Stewart finished with 22 points, which included six 3-pointers. The starters were pulled with three minutes left in the third quarter and Hinds leading 70-17.

War Dawg reserve Jarius Taylor scored all 10 of his points in the fourth quarter.

East Marion (9-17) was paced by Ayrion Taylor with 15 points.


Contact Jeff Byrd at jbyrd@vicksburgpost.com.