It was city rivalry week on the hardwood in Ann Arbor as Skyline hosted Pioneer on Thursday night. Both teams were coming off losses to Huron earlier in the week.
The Eagles led by three points at halftime and extended it to 10 heading into the fourth quarter. Skyline cruised the rest of the way for an impressive 50-37 win over a solid Pioneer team.
Skyline improves to 6-4 overall and 5-2 in the SEC. The Eagles will host Lincoln on Monday. The Pioneers play at Monroe on Saturday.
Chris Cayton and Jack Williams each scored 11 points to lead the Eagles. Will Gardner had nine points and Jermaine Davis scored eight. Jayden Potts had four points and Ashay Arora and James Harrison each scored three.
Rasheed Sampson scored 11 points and Elijah Klein had eight points for the Pioneers. DeMarcus DeWolf (two triples) had six points and Aidan Lee scored five.
Skyline and Pioneer started out the first quarter in a half-court defensive game where Pioneer had long possessions and Skyline missed opportunities in transition opportunities. Gardner came up with 8 big points in the first quarter on offensive rebounds and paint touches to help Skyline offensively.
Skyline led 10-7 after one quarter.
The Eagles turned up the full-court pressure in the second quarter to start and got up eight points forcing turnovers and attacking the basket. Pioneer was able to change the tempo after a couple Skyline missed shots and converted at the free-throw line going 6 of 7 the last couple minutes of the second quarter and Skyline got out of rhythm.
The Eagles led 23-20 at the break.
In the second half, Skyline turned up the defensive energy and full-court pressure another notch and was able to force turnovers and eventually started to convert in transition to build a 10 point lead.
The Eagles finished the third quarter with the momentum and a 38-28 lead.
In the fourth quarter, Skyline continued to pressure the first half of the fourth quarter and extended the lead. The Eagles played solid half-court defense and took care of the ball down the stretch to secure the win.