SHERIDAN — The Bryant Blue Hornets eighth grade team of Bethel Middle School doubled their score in the fourth quarter to force an overtime but couldn’t get a last-second shot to go at the end of the extra period in a 25-23 loss at Sheridan Thursday.
It was just the second loss in 12 games this season for the Hornets who play next at the Anthony School in Little Rock on Monday, Jan. 25.[more]
In a seventh grade game at Conway’s Carl Stuart Middle School, Bryant Blue absorbed a 43-30 loss, their first of the season in eight outings.
In a low-scoring battle in Sheridan, the Hornets led 6-4 at the end of the first quarter but went scoreless in the second as Sheridan surged to a 9-6 lead at the half. The Stingers led 16-10 going into the final period when the Hornets got their offense in gear and rallied to tie.
Bryant trailed by 2 with :03.3 on the clock. Head coach Derek McGrew called a timeout to set up a play for Trevor Ezell to get a shot at a potential game-winning 3-pointer. Ezell was fouled on the play at the buzzer so, with no time left, went to the foul line and converted twice to forge the 21-21 tie.
“I was pleased with the effort of the young men,” McGrew said. “We really struggled with their size and length. We employed a tight-packed 2-3 zone for three quarters. They were expecting our man, but we tried to make them beat us from outside.
On offense, McGrew related, “We had a lot of trouble with their extended 1-3-1. But we went back to man defense and it seemed to jump start us in the fourth quarter.
Chase Christie led the Hornets with 9 points. Ezell added 7 with Dakota Besancon and Davis Nossaman picking up 3 each and Bryce Denker hitting a free throw.
In the seventh-grade game, Bryant broke out to a 9-5 lead and held a 15-15 edge at the half. But Conway put together a big third quarter to push into the lead, 32-23 going into the fourth.
John Winn led Bryant with 11 points. Brandon Warner added 8, Jason Hastings 5, Mark Winn 4 and Brushawn Hunter 2.