RAINSVILLE — Behind their full-court pressure defense and 3-point-shot-making, the Plainview Bears overwhelmed the Collinsville Panthers early en route to advancing to the Class 3A Northeast Sub-Regional semifinal round.
Cole Millican scored 21 points, accounting for half of the Bears’ 10 first-half 3-point baskets as they raced to a 40-point lead and won 88-47 at DeKalb County Schools Coliseum on Wednesday afternoon.
Plainview (28-5) travels to Saks for the sub-regional semifinal round at 6:30 p.m. Friday.
“I thought our guys were locked in, I thought we were ready to play,” Plainview coach Robi Coker said. “In postseason basketball every game takes a life of its own. We really wanted to force the issue and make the game a game of pace.
“I thought our guys did a great job of pushing the ball early to create some easy opportunities and get us going.”
Luke Smith scored 17 points, Jathan Underwood added 12 points and six rebounds and Jonah Williams and Dylan Haymon each contributed 10 points for the Bears.
Colton Wills finished with a game-high 22 points for the Panthers (6-16). Malachi Orr scored 12 points and Jacob Jones had 11 points.
Collinsville finished with 20 turnovers, many as a result of Plainview’s defensive pressure.
“We didn’t handle (Plainview’s pressure) very well,” Panthers coach Jon Tidmore said. “Their full-court pressure is very good.”
Smith made a pair of 3s and Millican pulled up for a solo 3-pointer before dishing one to Williams in the corner to give Plainview a 31-13 advantage heading into the second period.
“Great shooting teams have great passers,” Coker said, “and I thought our guys did a good job of making the next pass and creating some easy opportunities for their teammates. Also, shooting is sometimes contagious. We made a couple early 3s and our guys fed off of the next pass and then it just kind of snowballed.”
The Bears outscored Collinsville 29-7 to close the half with a commanding 60-20 lead.
“We did some good looks, but we also took some quick ones that kind of fueled their break,” Tidmore said. “It turned into 2-on-2 and 3-on-3. It would’ve been nice to have slown it down a little bit against them.”