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Cross-town rivals square off in boys basketball

NATCHEZ — Cathedral High School Green Wave hosts Adams County Christian School Rebels tonight in the first cross-town rivalry game of the boys’ basketball season for both teams.

“Any time you get to face your cross-town rival it’s exciting for the town and the kids,” said Matthew Freeman, ACCS head basketball coach. “Cathedral’s head coach, Taylor Strahan, went to school with me at Trinity Episcopal. It’s going to be exciting because Strahan and I are first-year coaches.”

Freeman played basketball for the Trinity Saints when he was in high school from 2004-08. Strahan followed in Freeman’s footsteps and played for the Saints and graduated in 2012. Strahan said he grew up watching Freeman play when Strahan was an eighth grader.

“It’s cool to see us both going up against each other in our first year. It will be cool just from the fact we came from David King’s background and he coached both of us in basketball,” Strahan said. “I think it’s going to be interesting for King to watch us go against each other.”

In Strahan’s first year as the Green Wave’s coach, Cathedral’s overall record is 9-9 going into Friday’s game. Cathedral lost 60-46 to Oak Forest Academy in the MAIS 4-4A opener on Tuesday.

In the game, Kaden Batieste led the Green Wave with 17 points. 

“Kaden is the youngest player on the court for both teams every night,” Strahan said. “He’s got everything he needs in a player. All of the freshmen have made a lot of strides this year and every game is a good experience for them. They perform well.”

In the upcoming game against the Rebels, Strahan said the Green Wave are focusing on limiting turnovers. Strahan said turnovers kill momentum for the Green Wave and allow opponents to score easy points in transition.

On the other side, Freeman has an overall record of 5-5 in his first year as head basketball coach for the Rebels.

The latest win for the Rebels came on Wednesday night in a 60-39 victory over Silliman Institute Wildcats in their MAIS 4-4A opener. Vic Lassiter led the Rebels with 26 points. Wes Stockstill was second on the team with 11 points and Josh Credit and J.D. Granger each scored 10 points.

“Vic has really stepped up and has been a leader for us,” Freeman said. “He has really carried the team and worked his butt off. He’s always in the gym perfecting his game.”

The game starts at 7:30 p.m. Friday at Cathedral High School.