Greene Central's defense, Dodd's near triple-double key in win over Westover
Greene Central's Imajae Dodd shoots over the Westover defense in Monday's contest. Photo by William “Bud” Hardy / Neuse News
FARMVILLE | Greene Central coach Blue Edwards asked Imajae Dodd to get a triple-double for him Monday and it nearly happened.
Dodd finished with 14 points, 12 blocks and nine rebounds as the Rams defeated Westover 59-49 in the Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Invitational at Farmville Central. The Rams (13-5) trailed most of a tightly contested contest, but used a strong defensive effort to get past the Wolverines (12-3).
"I was just trying to lock down defensively and do what my teammates needed me to," Dodd said. "(Westover) was a really physical and aggressive team and this gave us great momentum for Ayden-Grifton (Tuesday.)"
There were eight lead changes and two ties in the first quarter. A slam by Dodd put the Rams up 15-14 late in the frame, but Traymond Willis-Shaw closed it out with five straight for the Wolverines. Westover would maintain the advantage throughout the half, extending it to 28-19 on a deep 3-pointer by Darius Jewell midway through the second quarter. Greene Central would fight back to close the gap to 34-31 at halftime.
Trailing 40-34 midway through the third, Greene Central would go on a 6-0 run, punctuated by a Hysaan Hudson basket. Isaiah Bridges' free throw stopped the run, but Dodd threw down a vicious putback slam in the waning seconds to put the Rams ahead 42-41 heading into the fourth.
Greene Central wouldn't trail again as Hudson and Jekael Gay hit 3-pointers during a 7-0 run to start the fourth. Westover got within 51-47 on a TeAndre Walton basket with 2:09 to play, but Dodd scored on the other end and the Rams would go 6 of 6 at the foul line in the final minute.
Edwards, in his first game coaching since serving a one-game suspension, said the team got it together in the second half.
"I'm happy to be back coaching," Edwards said. "It seemed like I had been away from basketball for a week and the team played like it in the first half. We didn't get into our rhythm (until the second half) and we stole one against a good team."
Westover coach George Stackhouse said it was a tale of two halves. The Wolverines shot 48 percent in the first, but 29 in the second, coinciding with the nine second-half blocks Dodd posted.
"In the first half, we had our intensity," Stackhouse said. "I don't know if we got complacent or what in the second, but Imajae blocked a lot of shots and we didn't have our usual aggression."
The Rams host Ayden-Grifton Tuesday.
GREENE CENTRAL 59, WESTOVER 49
W 19 15 7 8—49
GC 15 16 11 17—59
WESTOVER — Traymond Willis-Shaw 18, Walton 9, Jewell 9, Marsh 6, George 4, Lindsey 2, Bridges 1
GREENE CENTRAL— Imajae Dodd 14, Hysaan Hudson 14, Jekael Gay 11, B.J. Corbitt 11, Johnson 7, Taylor 2
Fouled out: None.
Technical fouls: None.
Three-pointers: W — Jewell 3, Willis-Shaw 2. GC — Gay 3, Corbitt 2, Hudson 2, Johnson.