The Guy-Perkins boys continued retiring coach John Hutchcraft's quest for an 11th state title with an 88-77 victory Wednesday over Dermott in a Class 1A first-round game at Morrilton.
The defending state champion Thunderbirds, 34-8 and Region 3 champs, advance to play Armorel or Deer at 8:30 p.m. Friday in the quarterfinals.
Trey Minton scored 19 of his 28 points the first half as the Thunderbirds held a nine- to 12-point lead most of the second half against a feisty Dermott team that refused to go away.
"We had a bad first game," said Hutchcraft. "But first games of tournaments are always tough. There are a lot of great teams here."
"We knew Dermott was gonna be ready and we wanted to come out strong," added Minton in a radio interview.
Mount Vernon-Enola girls
Alysse Ellis hit back-to-back 3-pointers on the way to eight straight points in the second quarter Wednesday, helping Mount Vernon-Enola's girls to a 73-49 victory over Acorn in the 1A tournament at Morrilton.
The Lady Warhawks (32-8) led, 35-21, at the half.
The Lady Tigers drew within 35-29 early in the third quarter before Grace Raby and Kendal Hardy began asserting themselves inside, sparking a 7-0 run.
A three-point play, then a buzzer basket by Raby put MV-Enola up, 55-35, after three quarters.
The substitutes cleaned up the fourth quarter.
The Lady Warhawks will play Jasper at 7 p.m Thursday.