By David Wheeler/Special to the NEMS Daily Journal
MOOREVILLE – The Mooreville Troopers shot less than 50 percent from the free throw line in the fourth quarter Friday night.
But they made two when needed.
In the final regular season contest for both squads, the Troopers held off the Amory Panthers 65-63.
“They missed a few shots in the fourth quarter that gave us some run-outs and easy baskets,” Mooreville head coach Jeff Tally said. “Brandon Moore had some key penetration in the fourth period, and Kelsey Scott hit those free throws at the last for us.”
With both boys squads slated for high seeds in their respective tournaments next week, the potential for a close game played out nicely as neither team led by more than four points in the first half.
In the fourth quarter, Mooreville’s Moore made some nice drives into the lane, good for three field goals, as the Troopers (25-3) built as much as a nine point lead at 58-49.
Then Amory’s Dario Robinson scored nine straight points for the Panthers (20-6), and a Jailon Lowe 3-pointer with 11 seconds left pulled the visitors within 63-61.
But after numerous shaky attempts from the free throw line by the Troopers, senior Scott drained two free shots with 8 seconds remaining to ice the win before a final tip in by the Panthers.
“In the second and third quarters, I think we struggled to score,” Amory head coach Rob Browning said. “We couldn’t put together stops.”
Devon Bartlett paced the Mooreville offense with 17 points, while Amory’s Robinson scored 28.
(G) Mooreville 49, Amory 24: The Lady Troopers moved to as much as a 43-13 lead after three quarters of play.
Headed into Division 2-3A Tournament as the No. 1 seed, the Lady Troopers (14-14) saw Tiana Allen off the bench lead the way with 15 points.