Thanksgiving Day hadn’t even arrived, but Corinth Holders and Greene Central may have already provided a boys basketball Game of the Year candidate.
The clubs dueled for two overtimes Monday – with the lead changing hands seven times in the extra sessions – before visiting Greene Central outlasted the Pirates by a 67-64 margin.
“I guess that’s the way you draw up the season opener,’’ said Greene Central coach Charles Harris. “That was quite a game.’’
The Rams (1-0) trailed 46-39 with just under four minutes remaining in regulation before rallying to force the first overtime.
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Greene Central was on the verge of a victory in the initial extra session, but Corinth Holders’ Trey Adams forced a second OT with two clutch free throws to tie the score with less than one second remaining.
Two key offensive rebounds – including a stick-back from freshman Imajae Dodd with 12 ticks left – helped propel Greene Central in the final overtime.
“Those rebounds made the difference,’’ Harris said. “We are senior-heavy at the guard spot and have only juniors and freshmen in the post. But those kids came up with some big plays.’’
After Corinth Holders (1-1) evened the score at 64-64 on a Brian Frazier basket with 1:06 remaining, the Rams held the ball and were rewarded when A.J. Davis was fouled inside at the 14-second mark. Davis made the first free toss but missed the second, only to see Dodd scoop up the rebound and score. The Pirates needed a trey to tie, and about got one when Coby Cox’s buzzer-beater bounced off the glass and almost went in.
“The team that made the fewest mistakes at crunch time won the game,’’ said Corinth Holders coach Chris Davis. “We made a couple of bad decisions and took a couple of bad shots. And we had a lack of rotation that hurt us when we gave up those offensive rebounds (to Greene Central).’’
Three who mattered
Tre Wade, Greene Central: Also the starting signal-caller for Greene Central’s successful football team this fall, Wade served as the Rams’ hoops quarterback, especially with his ballhandling abilities down the stretch. He finished with a game-high 19 points.
“Tre is a heck of a football and basketball player,’’ Harris said. “He is a kid who doesn’t rattle easily. He is our orchestrator – the guy who makes us go. If not for (current Duke University player) Brandon Ingram last year at Kinston, Tre might have been our Player of the Year in the conference.’’
Trey Adams, Corinth Holders: With less than one second remaining in the first overtime – and his team trailing by two points – Adams grabbed a missed shot and went up aggressively toward the basket before being fouled.
Facing a pressure-packed situation, Adams calmly swished both his free throw attempts to push the thriller into a second overtime.
“Not bad for a kid playing his second varsity game,’’ Davis said. “Trey is one of the most even-keeled guys on our team. We might have guys with a higher free-throw percentage, but there is nobody I would want on the line at that time more than (Adams). He stepped in and knocked them down.’’
Adams closed with nine points, 10 rebounds and three steals.
Brian Frazier, Corinth Holders: A transfer from North Johnston, Frazier has made an immediate impact for the Pirates, including Monday’s 18-point performance. He also contributed seven rebounds and four steals.
They said it
“We are going to have a good team,’’ said Davis, whose club registered seven victories last season. “We have size and depth. If we make good decisions and handle the ball well, we should have a solid year.’’