E.A. Sports Today

Weaver takes third

Junior guard Mosley returns to the floor after scary fall, helps Bearcats win Haralson County Invitational consolation game

Weaver junior Gio Mosley (23) was back in the middle of the action after suffering a scary fall the day before.

Weaver junior Gio Mosley (23) was back in the middle of the action after suffering a scary fall the day before.

By Al Muskewitz
East Alabama Sports Today

TALLAPOOSA, Ga. — As hard a fall as Weaver guard Gio Mosley took Tuesday afternoon, the last place you’d expect to find him on Wednesday was in the middle of a multi-player scrum.

But there he was — on multiple occasions — in the Bearcats’ 59-44 consolation game victory over Spring Garden, diving for loose balls with seemingly little regard for his personal well-being.

Weaver coach Daryl Hamby says it’s the only way the junior knows how to play.

“It’s either go hard or go home,” Mosley said. “When I was in the game I wasn’t thinking about my face hurting. I was thinking about getting the ball and helping our team get the win. I just did what I had to do.”

Mosley took a frighteningly hard face plant under the goal with about three minutes left in the first half of the Bearcats’ semifinal loss to eventual tournament champion Pepperell the day before.

He left gym at halftime for tests, which revealed a cracked cheekbone under his right eye.

He was back on the floor Wednesday and on three occasions in the first half and at least once in the second dove head first for loose balls to give the Bearcats a chance to score. And all 11 players who got in the game for Weaver scored.

“He just doesn’t know any other way,” Hamby said. “That’s what makes him such a good competitor, because he doesn’t know any other gear. There’s not a slow gear for him, there’s not a takeoff gear, he just plays hard, he’s aggressive and he just gets after it.”

Spring Garden coach Ricky Austin was in the gym Tuesday and saw Mosley hit the floor. He was surprised the player was back in the gym, but understands the temperament.

“Those guys are rare,” he said. “They’re different than other people. They’re so driven, they play to win every second of their lives. And that’s what I see when I see him play, how driven he is to be perfect on every play.”

It’s the kind of approach that makes Mosley perfect for the group of reserves Hamby sends into the game en masse whenever the starters aren’t getting the job done.

It was that group, with Mosley leading the way, that saved the day in the Bearcats’ semifinal upset of No. 4 Westbrook Christian in the Riley Whitaker Christmas Classic last week.

“He’s a different kid because he can guard a guard or he can guard a big because he’s so strong and physical,” Hamby said.

The Bearcats opened the game big, starting both posts, Malik Arnold and Ducky Morris, but they soon turned up the heat with their speed. All-tournament pick Arnold and Delo Forbes led Weaver’s balanced scoring attack with 12 points apiece. Riley Austin led Spring Garden with 12 and Draevan Bowman had 11.

Spring Garden didn’t score many baskets in the first half as Weaver opened a 34-27 lead, but the Panthers stayed in it by hitting 15 of 16 from the line. They were 0-for-1 in the second half.

“I thought we played well, especially after last night,” Hamby said. “We could’ve laid down and laid a goose egg, but we didn’t. We came out and played hard and fast like we’re supposed to.”

Weaver 59, Spring Garden 44

WEAVER – Delo Forbes 4 2-2 12, Jalen Heath 4 0-0 9, Craig Copeland 1 1-2 3, Paul Hubbard 4 1-1 9, London Knight 2 1-2 5, Dalton Hamby 1 0-2 2, R.J. Wooden 0 1-2 1, Maurice Goodman 1 0-0 2, Gio Mosley 1 0-0 2, Malik Arnold 6 0-0 12, Ducky Morris 1 0-0 2. Totals 25 6-11 59.

SPRING GARDEN – Riley Austin 3 6-6 12, Dakota Lambert 1 1-2 3, Ben Ivey 1 2-2 4, Ashton Rogers 1 0-0 2, Dylan Rogers 1 2-2 4, Draevan Bowman 4 0-0 11, Tanner Parker 0 0-1 0, Joseph Rogers 2 2-2 6, Avery Gowens 0 0-0 0, Dalton Rogers 0 0-0 0, Luke Ivey 0 2-2 2. Totals 13 15-17 44.

Weaver 19 15 13 12 — 59
Spring Garden 15 12 12 5 — 44

3-point goals: Weaver 3 (Forbes 2, Heath); Spring Garden 3 (Bowman 3). Total fouls: Weaver 20, Spring Garden 11.

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