BENTON — A defensive battle through three quarters erupted in the fourth as both the Bryant White Hornets and the Benton Panthers more than doubled their scores in the final period of their eighth-grade game at Cook Fieldhouse.
The Hornets led 10-7 going into the final period and held on as the Panthers’ Elias Payne scored 8 points and the team hit 7 of 10 free throws. But the Hornets hit 3 of 4 from the charity stripe while Elam Shelby drained a pair of clutch 3’s and Daniel Anderson scored 4 points for a 23-22 victory.
Shelby, the Hornets’ leading scorer for the season was held scoreless before those big triples, finishing with 6 points. Anderson had 5. Chris Johnson led Bryant White with 7 including two of the free throws in the final stanza.
Kaleb Ellis and Nick Baker each had a basket during the third quarter to keep the Hornets ahead.
It was 5-2 after a quarter with the Hornets leading, just 6-3 at the half.
“It was another tough win for us,” said Bryant White coach Richard Wrightner. “Turnovers were hurting us bad. We also had some tough calls against us. But the guys still found a way to win.”
The victory improved the Hornets to 8-1 on the season going into today’s game against Bryant Blue. Tipoff is set for 5 p.m.