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Newton basketball owns Eastside in season opener
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The rivalry between Newton High School and Eastside High School didn’t matter on Tuesday night as both the Rams' girls' and the boys' basketball teams won big with ease. The Lady Rams were up first and won 54-33 and then the boys took the spotlight and won 90-60. 

Lady Rams
First-game jitters were apparent for both Newton and Eastside’s girls' as they came out a bit sloppy, but the Lady Rams got it going in the second quarter and used a 22-0 run in the second to take a commanding lead on the way to a 54-33 win.

Newton was able to get to the free-throw line effectively early for their first four points of the contest before Imani Broadnax drained a 3-pointer to give the Lady Rams a 7-2 lead. When Newton went up 9-4, the Lady Eagles answered as Nia Davis hit Sydney Mask for a wide open jumper from mid-range to make it 9-8, Newton. Teirra Brown would hit a floater to give Eastside a 10-9 lead after the first quarter.

Newton and its full-court trap defense caused problems for the Lady Eagles in the second, forcing turnovers and giving Newton easy chances at points. Newton began the second period by forcing two straight turnovers as Alexcia Chatman and Kalia Smith scored back-to-back baskets to give Newton a 13-10 lead.

Imani Broadnax drained a three and extended the lead to 16-10. A Smith put-back extended a 12-0 run that turned into a 14-0 run when Broadnax got a steal and went coast-to-coast for the euro-stepping layup, which gave Newton a 23-10 lead. The Lady Rams finished the quarter on a 22-0 run ending on a jumper from Traleea Jones who was fouled, but missed the free throw.

Coming out of halftime, Chasity Smith hits a close jumper to break Eastside’s scoreless streak early in the third quarter. Davis cut through the middle and received a pass for the easy lay-in as Eastside trimmed the deficit to 32-16.

A triple trimmed the lead to 32-19, and Eastside was back in business. Or so they thought. After a free throw Chatman reeled off five straight points and Newton’s lead was back at 19. Destine Smith knocked down a three at the end of the third and cut Newton’s lead down to 16.

Brown opened the fourth with a three of her own to get the lead down to 13 and hit another to get it down to 10 at the 5:30 mark, but Jurnee Smith answered with a put-back to take the lead back to 12 (40-28).

The final five minutes saw Newton finish the game on a 14-5 run to win 54-33.

The boys

Newton came out playing lightning fast and it led to a 10-2 run early that began with JD Notae backing down Eastside’s Joshua Cammon and hitting the turnaround jumper. The run ended when Isaiah Miller, who got into foul trouble early and eventually sat with three fouls in the quarter, got a steal and went coast-to-coast for the breakaway dunk.

Cammon would hit a three to make it 12-9, Newton after a Josh Tukes put-back. That’s as close as Eastside would get as Newton finished the quarter on an 18-3 run that was highlighted by a handful of treys from Notae.

Midway through the second, TeAndre Bailey would hit two threes in a one minute span to get Eastside within 13 points, but Newton’s defense took over and Jaquan Sims swished in a three as the Rams ended the period up 49-31.

The defense of the Rams remained stellar. They forced Eastside into contested shots and forced turnovers, turning them into easy points. The Rams began the third frame on a 15-2 run with Sims and Notae scoring the majority of the points. Newton’s lead would get as high as 31 in the quarter before finishing the game with a 90-60 victory.