Jordan Jones knows the stakes.
“It's my senior year,” Jones said. “We haven't really been that good these past couple years. I think me and the rest of the seniors have taken it upon ourselves to get better and push us over that hump, to get to a winning season.”
Jones scored eight of his game-high 18 points in the fourth quarter. Caleb Hunter scored 11 of his 13 in the second half.
Unavailable in the first half, Dickson's Ty Frasier helped the Comets take a two-point lead into the final quarter. Turnovers and missed free throws doomed a rally bid, as Plainview won 60-49 Friday at Plainview Activity Center.
Posters of nine Plainview boys seniors hang on the wall opposite the gym entrance.
“That's two seniors (Hunter and Jones) that have come in and not only hooked up and done what we've asked them to do in practice, but have put a whole lot of extra time in,” Plainview coach Chris Ryan said. “Every open gym, every opportunity, they're begging to get in the gym and get shots in. That senior leadership has been huge for us this year.”
Hunter scored a tying two-pointer 10 seconds into the fourth quarter. Jones assisted.
Jones also scored the go-ahead and-1 with 6:19 remaining that broke the final tie. Twenty seconds later, Dickson guard Hunter Palesano had a steal and a layup that cut Plainview's (2-4) lead to 46-43. Ryan called a full timeout.
From that point forward, the Comets (3-5) struggled with turnovers against the Indians' pressure.
With 2:07 to play, Jones hit the 3-pointer that pushed the Indians' lead to double digits. He credited his teammate, Taylon Chambers, who passed him the ball.
“Without him none of that would be possible,” Jones said. “It felt great. We were up by seven or eight and it kind of pushed us over the hump and we just held them.”
Being a rivalry game, and with Frasier's return, Dickson made Plainview earn its victory.
Frasier scored on the Comets' initial two possessions of the second half, finishing with nine points, three rebounds and an assist. Haley declined to say why Frasier watched the first half.
Garrett Watterson — who had a team-high 12 points — scored a second-chance basket to tie the game at 36 with 1:08 to play in the third quarter. Palesano took a charge against Plainview senior guard Jerry Harris with 20.8 seconds remaining. Thirteen seconds later, Brenton Bland hit a jumper off the dribble to give Dickson a 38-36 lead entering the final quarter.
Moreover, the Comets missed chances earlier in the game. Dickson got Plainview in the double bonus about nine minutes into the game.
The Comets shot the 1-and-1 three times in the first quarter, missing the front end in each instance.
“That really cost us,” Haley said.
Dickson shot 3 of 7 from the free-throw line in the first half.
Friday's game is obviously a rivalry contest. One Comets player gave a hard foul against Harris in the final minute or so.
“Emotions are flaring,” Jones said. “I love playing Dickson, Lone Grove, all the teams in our conference. They're all going to be high tempo.”
Ryan, Plainview's second-year coach, expressed excitement at his team's current status.
“We played a tough” slate to begin the season, Ryan said.
Harris and Lane Ross are among the football players who only had a couple days to reacclimate themselves to basketball.
“We knew coming off those tough wins would get us ready for conference play,” Ryan said. “We're really excited about going into Christmas break and working hard, sharpening some things up and coming out ready to go in conference.
“Our whole focus is team victory. We've got the ability to play a lot of guys. Everything we're doing is team-focused.”
Meanwhile, Dickson has “two weeks to get ready for Sulphur,” Haley said.
Box scoreDickson 9 12 17 11 Plainview 11 17 8 24
Plainview: Jordan Jones 18, Taylon Chambers 14, Caleb Hunter 13, Jackson Bobst 8, Devin Jones 7.
Dickson: Garrett Watterson 12, Brenton Bland 11, Ty Frasier 9, Hunter Palesano 7, Tyler Jennings 5, Bransen Kent 3, J.T. Marsh 2.
Plainview: 4 (Jordan Jones 3, Hunter)
Dickson: 3 (Brenton Bland, Kent, Palesano)