NEW MADRID -- The New Madrid County Central Eagle basketball team routed the visiting Caruthersville Tigers 69-37 Friday night in New Madrid.
The Eagles (2-1) were in control the duration of the contest and were led offensively by junior Kony Ealy (17 points, 11 rebounds, three steals) and senior Josh Minner (16 points, six rebounds, one steal).
NMCC dominated the boards in Friday's contest, out rebounding the Tigers 37-14.
Eagles head coach Travis Day was pleased with the Friday outing.
"We kept our intensity and played hard all night," Day said. "We dove around for loose balls and applied pressure, that's what we are looking to do especially early in the season. Our effort and aggression was very good tonight."
Day also commented on the patience of his offense as it attempts to find its rhythm early in the season.
"We were very patient with our offense tonight, which is what we have been trying to do," he said. "We attacked the paint like we wanted to and took good shots."
Day noted the marked improvement on offense.
"I think we are getting better offensively," he said. "We are playing smarter and unselfishly. If you don't have the shot, make the extra pass. Our goal is to attack the paint, if they take that away we can work back outside. We did that well tonight."
NMCC's offense got a big boost off the bench tonight as forward Terry Young provided 12 points and six rebounds off the bench Friday night.
"I feel everyone contributes to this team," Day said. "Our bench will determine how far we go this year. Terry (Young) is getting better every day. He (Young) will be a big key for us. Tyler Johnson will have to continue to give us quality minutes. We need those guys and others to continue to step up and help us out."
Although Day was pleased with the outcome, he saw plenty of room for improvement.
"As a coach, it never goes exactly like you want to," he said. "We have to get better defensively. We have a way's to go with that. We also have to do a better job taking care of the ball. It's early and those things will come."
Caruthersville's (1-4) head coach Stan Ray said that his team played all 32 minutes of the game.
"Our kids played very hard tonight," Ray said. "We are very young and our tallest kid is 5-7. We battled hard tonight and that speaks a lot to their character. Our boys could have just laid down and lost by 50, but they didn't and I am very proud of them for that."
Day and the Eagles are preparing for the SEMO Conference tournament in Sikeston next week.
"Next week will be a big week for us with the conference tournament," he said. "We have a tough conference top to bottom. Hopefully, we can have a good week there."
The SEMO Conference tournament begins Monday at the Sikeston Field House. NMCC will take on Dexter at 8:30 p.m. Monday in the first round.
In junior varsity action, the Eagles defeated Caruthersville 44-33. Scoring leaders were Keith Word (10) and Xavier McFerren (10) for NMCC and L.B. Fonda (7) for the Tigers.