Osceola Middle School holds on to beat PECS

OKEECHOBEE — The Osceola Middle School (OMS) boys basketball team held on to win against Pemayetv Emahakv Charter School (PECS) 29-26 in their game on Jan. 10.

The win brings the OMS boys team to 7-2 on the year.

The Osceola Middle School (OMS) boys basketball team held on to win against Pemayetv Emahakv Charter School (PECS) 29-26 in their game on Jan. 10. Above, PECS player Bryce Ward attempts to come down with the rebound in the OMS and PECS game on Jan. 10. Lake Okeechobee News/Richard Marion.

If you had only seen the first half you would’ve been surprised to see the final score so close. OMS shut out PECS for the first quarter, in fact PECS wouldn’t get on the board until only two minutes remained in the second quarter. The first half ended with OMS up 18-5. OMS’s Lee Edouard had 11 of those 18 points in the first half.

PECS played fast and aggressive throughout the first half, but just couldn’t get their shots to land.

But that all changed in the second half.

PECS, led by Wyatt Hines and Bryce Ward, put up 22 points in the second half while holding OMS to 10. But the missed shot bug would pop up again at the worst time for PECS. One sequence saw PECS miss five back-to-back shots in the final moments of the game.

OMS head coach Justin Perman was proud of the way his team showed mental toughness in not being overwhelmed by the PECS comeback.

“We’ve been talking the whole year about mental toughness,” explained Perman. “Our very first game of the year we had a really close one where we lost by two. That was kind of a wake-up call that if we’re in close games we need to be able to finish at the end. In this game we kind of dug ourselves a hole and let them come back but we were able to end up on the winning side. It’s a little bit of just having resiliency but it’s also a case of us being in that situation before and we didn’t want to lose again.”

Perman gave recognition to Kamari Jones and Troy Young for their performance in the game.

OMS and PECS players scramble for the ball in their game on Jan. 10. Lake Okeechobee News/Richard Marion.

“Every game we have somebody who shines for us,” said Perman. “Lee Edouard is kind of our leader. We look to him because he’s played the most and has the most experience. As a team though I’m always proud of all of them.”

The OMS girls team also won their match against PECS, 54-14. The girls team is undefeated for the year with a perfect 9-0 record.

Both the boys and girls teams will be back in action on Jan. 15 when they face LaBelle Middle School at OMS with the girls game tipping of at 4:50 p.m. and the boys at 5:45 p.m.

Another game to keep your eye on is when OMS plays cross-town rival Yearling Middle School on Feb. 1. Both OMS teams were victorious in the last meet-up between the two schools.

“We just look to improve every game,” said Perman of his goals for the team. “Every single day that we show up to practice we look to be better when we leave the gym then we were when we came in. In the long run we’re looking to get these guys set up for the future to play at the high school level.”

Richard Marion is a staff writer and photographer at Lake Okeechobee News and can be reached at rmarion@newszap.com.

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