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NORTH PULASKI BOYS Eyes still on state tournament prize

<p>North Pulaski&amp;#8217;s Jerrod Cravens in action last week.</p><p>Chad Matchett</p>Buy Photo

North Pulaski&#8217;s Jerrod Cravens in action last week.

Chad Matchett

Consecutive conference victories is something North Pulaski could use in its quest for a state tournament spot.

The Falcons (9-11, 3-6 5A-Central) defeated West Helena, 60-55, last week but then dropped contests to Pulaski Academy, 41-36, in overtime last Friday and to Jacksonville, 58-34, two days ago. The hunt for successive victories begins tomorrow as the Falcons travel to Little Rock Mills.

Prior to Tuesday’s game, North Pulaski was fifth in the conference. The four teams ahead of them were Jacksonville, Little Rock McClellan, Pulaski Academy and Mills.

“The key is to keep the teams behind us behind us,” North Pulaski Coach Roy Jackson said. “We need a week with two wins. But we are just going to take it game by game and not look too much ahead.”

In the contest against West Helena, Jackson said North Pulaski played well and played as a team. Junior Joe Aikens led the Falcons with 12 points while Fred Thomas and Daniel Drone contributed 10 each.

In last Friday’s game, the Falcons led by six at the end of the first quarter and at halftime. However, the second half ended up even as the score was tied at 26-all after three periods and at 33-all at the end of regulation. North Pulaski did score a three-point basket at the end of the overtime to keep from going scoreless that period.

“PA took us and Jacksonville to overtime,” Jackson said. “The kids played well. As a young team, at times they do things well and at other times do don’t do things the way they are capable of doing. I think we did everything but win the game. Sometimes, the kids got to will themselves to win.”

In Tuesday’s contest at Jacksonville, the Falcons were without freshman RaShawn Langston who was ill. Aikens paced the Falcons with 10 points.

Friday’s contest at Mills is the first meeting between the two this season. The first contest was rescheduled because of wintery weather. Jackson sees a game in the making.

“We mirror each other so much and match up with them real well,” he said. “They like to run the ball all over the place. We like the up-tempo but will need to slow it down.”

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