January 4, 2007

Tigers Snatch Victory Over Canton In Final Seconds

After already losing two heart-breakers in overtime this season, Scotland County didn’t want to see another game go an extra period. Bryce Blomme insured that with a clutch steal and a layup with less than six seconds in the game to secure a 57-55 victory over Canton December 28th in Memphis.

For a moment it didn’t even appear as if the Tigers would have a shot at overtime as Canton held a two-point lead and was running out the clock before a layup attempt somehow rimmed out and gave Scotland County an opportunity to tie the contest at 55-55. SCR-I did just that with 16 seconds left to play when Cody Musgrove rebounded his own miss and scored inside to knot the score.

Canton called a time-out with the ball at midcourt to set up a final play. But they never got a chance to use the plan designed by coach Andy Anderson as a smothering Tigers defense forced the turnover on the inbounds pass. Blomme tipped the pass away from the Canton player and recovered it on his way to the winning two points.

Early on a victory was in question as Canton rushed out to a 9-0 lead before Musgrove scored in the paint with 2:40 left in the period.

“It was pretty ugly early on,” said Coach Ryan Bergeson. “It was 9-0 and could have been worse as Canton had several empty possessions that could have put us way down right off the bat.”

Scotland County trailed 11-4 at the end of the opening frame but finally got things rolling in the second quarter. After a Musgrove bucket, Matt Wickert scored four straight points to pull the Tigers within striking distance.

Musgrove then went to work converting a three-point play as part of seven straight points by the junior forward that left SCR-I trailing by just one.

Wickert gave the home team its first lead at 2:23 left in the first half when he scored in the paint. Scotland County maintained a 23-22 advantage at the intermission.

The two teams traded the lead back and forth in the third period until the Tigers looked poised to take charge of the game. Travis Trueblood connected on a jumper. After Musgrove scored inside, a Grant Blomme layup made the score 36-31 and forced a Canton time-out with 2:07 left in the quarter.

The margin favored SCR-I the rest of the third period but the 39-35 lead disappeared early in the fourth period courtesy of a 6-0 Canton run to regain the advantage.

The Tigers came right back with three-point plays from Wickert and Musgrove. The duo combined for the next 12 SCR-I points that left the game knotted at 51-51 with 2:38 to play.

Canton pulled ahead 53-51 and with 1:45 to play began milking the clock. With just three team fouls, SCR-I was forced to burn valuable time before finally putting Canton on the free throw line with 59.2 seconds left to play.

A pair of free throws put Canton ahead by four before Musgrove made it a one-possession game with a bucket in the lane with 40.5 to play. He tied the game with another strong move inside to set up Blomme’s heroics.

Musgrove finished the game with a season-high 28 points to lead all scorers. Wickert also had a season-high with 18 points as SCR-I evened its mark at 4-4 on the year.

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