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Bears win battle of new programs

LAWRENCEVILLE -- First-year programs Archer and Mountain View were scheduled to play each other for the first time in mid January.

That inaugural meeting was moved up to Wednesday in the Archer Tip-Off Classic.

Mountain View built an early first-half lead and never allowed Archer to get back in the game as the Bears cruised to a 68-52 victory.

The tournament victory came without head coach Bob Perryman on the bench. The veteran coach had to attend a family matter and was not able to coach in the championship game.

"It was tough not having him here," Bears player Drew Bollier said. "Coach Perryman is a great coach and his presence was felt here."

Rob Jenkins, a former college coach and English professor at Georgia Perimeter College, filled in for Perryman. Although the Bears players made it an easy coaching assignment for Jenkins.

Bollier was one of three Mountain View players in double figures with 16 points. Troy Taylor scored 15, Chaz Grant had 14 and Jestin Joseph added nine.

"I just told them to play for Coach Perryman and that he loves these guys," Jenkins said.

Mountain View started the game 8-0 and never relinquished the lead. The Bears hit three 3-pointers in the period and made 7 of 14 in the game.

"We've got some good shooters," Jenkins said.

The Bears began to put the game out of reach to start the second quarter when it started with a 10-0 run. Mountain View built a 17-point lead after Taylor's assist to Joseph made it 31-14 midway through the period.

"We wanted to attack them early," Bollier said. "We wanted to step on their throat and not give them any hope."

Archer's Khari Stevens hit a 3-pointer to stop the run momentarily, but Mountain View led 33-24 at halftime.

Bollier was fouled on a 3-pointer in the fourth quarter and hit all three free throws to push Mountain View's lead to 19. The Bears coasted from there to win the tournament.

"It's big," Bollier said of the tournament victory. "Being a first-year school and Archer being our rival adds to it."

Dinesh Brown was Archer's leading scorer with 16 points and Jermaine Morris contributed 12.

"I thought Chaz Grant and Craig Bartlett played great," Jenkins said. "They didn't score a lot, but they did a great job on the boards. They were the difference in the game."

The two first-year Gwinnett County programs will play again on Jan. 15 in a Region 8-AAA contest and again on Feb. 5.