Fittingly, four quarters weren’t enough to determine the winner in Monday’s highly anticipated showdown of state championship squads Garner and Terry Sanford at the HighSchoolOT.Com Holiday Invitational put on a show Monday.
In overtime Terry Sanford made enough big plays to eke out an 83-79 victory over the Trojans and earn the right to play Ravenscroft for the boys basketball title in the David West bracket at 6:50 p.m. Wednesday at Broughton High School.
Isaiah Stallings scored six of his team-high 17 points in the extra frame, with Malik Johnson adding 16 and Justin King 15 points for the Bulldogs (12-0), last year’s N.C. High School Athletic Association 3A state champions.
Thomas Allen had 28 points for Garner (10-2), last year’s NCHSAA 4A champions, who will play Voyager Academy in the third-place game 5:10 p.m. Tuesday.
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“I’ve been doing this for a long time, and that was one of the best basketball games I’ve ever been a part of,” Terry Sanford coach Bill Boyette said. “I knew the hype was here (Monday); you take the 3A champs and the defending 4A champions and play a basketball game. Obviously there was a lot of excitement out there tonight.”
Even though Terry Sanford led most of the game, the contest was tight throughout with only a few points separating the teams.
Terry Sanford led 69-65 following Johnson’s breakaway dunk with 57.7 seconds remaining in regulation, but the Trojans managed to tie behind some clutch shooting by Allen.
Allen nailed a three-pointer from the top of the key to bring Garner within 70-69 with 21.9 seconds remaining and made a pair of free throws with 12.5 seconds left to force overtime.
Terry Sanford rebounded by scoring the first five points of overtime, taking a 76-71 lead on a three-point play by Stallings. Garner eventually drew within 80-79 on a three-pointer by Allen, but after King hit two free throws to put Sanford up three, Allen came up short on a long three-point try from about 25 feet that would have tied it.
Will Boyette then made one of two free throws with 4.8 seconds left to seal the victory.
“Hats off to Terry Sanford High School,” Garner coach Eddie Gray said. “If there’s a better 3A team, I don’t know who that would be. I told them they have a great chance to repeat.”
Ravenscroft 91, Voyager Academy 56: Ian Dubose scored 20 points to lead five Ravenscroft players in double-digits as the Ravens defeated Voyager for the second time in less than two weeks. Tyler Williams added 19 points, Michael Okauru 13, Douglas Elks 11, and Demarcus Taylor 10 for Ravenscroft
Ravenscroft broke open a close game late in the second quarter, scoring the final seven points – the last three coming on a 30-foot heave by Elks at the buzzer – to take a 39-29 halftime lead.
Virginia-bound Jay Huff had 26 points, nine rebounds and five blocks to lead Voyager.
Broughton 77, Apex 74, OT: Tharon Suggs scored 16 of his game-high 22 points after halftime for Broughton, which will play Leesville Road in the fifth-place game Tuesday at 12:10 p.m.
Ian Boyd had 33 points and 13 rebounds for Apex, which meets Panther Creek in the seventh-place game at 10:30 a.m. Tuesday.
Leesville Road 71, Panther Creek 47: Alex Hunter scored 18 points and added four steals for Leesville Road in the victory. Juan Munoz had 20 points for Panther Creek.
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Wesleyan Christian 85, Carlisle (Va.) 49: Jalen Johnson scored 16 points to lead five Wesleyan players in double-digits in the first round victory over Carlisle. Wesleyan led 41-30 at halftime and outscored the Chiefs 44-19 in the second half. Wesleyan will face either Arlington Country Day (Fla.) on Tuesday at 6:50.
Cypress Lakes (Tex.) 91, J.M. Robinson 81: Kentucky recruit De’Aaron Fox put on a quite a show to lead the Spartans to the win. He scored 31 points, including 23 in the first half, scoring on a variety of shots. The winners also got a strong game from Charles Williams (24).
Robinson rallied to trail by just four, 84-80, late in the game, but could not catch the team from Texas. Senior Jordan McKenzie (22 points) and junior Lavar Batts Jr. (21) led the Bulldogs.
High Point Christian 92, Trinity Christian Fayetteville 65: A Cougars team loaded with future college players blasted the Crusaders as Edrice “Bam” Adebayo scored 28 points and pulled 11 rebounds. Already built like an NBA player, the power forward will face future Kentucky teammate De’Aaron Fox in a semifinal game Tuesday at 8:30 p.m. Boston College-bound Ty Graves scored 21 for the winners.
Arlington Country Day (Fla.) 77, Virginia Episcopal School 59: With the win, the Apaches out of Jacksonville, Fla., advanced to the semifinals and will play High Point Wesleyan on Tuesday at 6:50 p.m.
Arlington built a 35-28 halftime lead despite 21 points by Kentucky recruit Sacha Killeya-Jones, who is ranked number 31 on the ESPN 100. Killeya-Jones, from Chapel Hill, ended the game with 27 points and Durham’s Justice Kitchart, a Pittsburgh recruit, scored 19.
Justin Route led a more balanced Arlington attack with 18, followed by Luguentz Dort (15) and Alston David (10).