Gathers leads Riverside past Oakdale

Published 12:00 am Friday, March 4, 2011



RESERVE – Ricardo Gathers led the way with a triple-double Tuesday night as top-seeded Riverside easily took care of No. 16 seeded Oakdale, 106-52, in a Class 2A regional playoff game.

Gathers notched 25 points, 16 rebounds and 13 blocked shots in the victory, which stands as the Rebels’ 12th straight.

“He was a monster,” said Riverside coach Timmy Byrd. “Just dominant. He had eight blocks in the first half … he was all over the place at the defensive end. I hadn’t seen him block that many shots in a game before.”

Gathers also hit three 3-pointers in the game.

“He did it all. Inside, outside, and played great defense,” said Byrd.

Zelvyn Smith led all scorers with 26 points. Donald Thomas scored 19.

Riverside (30-6) led 22-13 after a quarter and busted things open in the second, outscoring Oakdale (17-11) 28-9.

“Our size and depth, again, were key factors,” said Byrd. “Our full court press really did them in. In the second half, I could tell they got a little tired and we created a lot of turnovers.”

Byrd said that Smith’s game-high point total was the product of his focus and hustle.

“When he’s very active, running the floor, focused on rebounding at both ends, he’s very productive for us,” said Byrd. “He brings a high energy level.”

The Rebels were scheduled to face No. 8-seeded Jonesboro-Hodge in the quarterfinals on Friday night (after presstime). It was a rematch of the 2A state championship a year ago.

Details and results will be in the next issue.