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BGA survives late Panther push at FRA for 71-61 win

BGA guard Noah Mayberry knocked down a corner 3-pointer with two minutes remaining to spark the Wildcats’ 9-3 run down the stretch to put away FRA 71-61.
After Mayberry’s three, do-it-all point guard Nathan Moran forced a steal and converted a layup to complete his game high 31 point outing. BGA (18-1) head coach, Len McKnatt was not surprised Mayberry nailed his only shot of the game.
“We call him “Sprayberry” instead of Mayberry,” McKnatt said. “Huge. We needed a timeout. They were making a little run and we were playing tentative; we had missed a few jump shots. He likes the corner and he’s just one of those kids that’s gonna get it done.”
Halfway through the third quarter this game looked over. The Wildcats jumped out to a 51-31 lead before FRA got some momentum together. Panther guard, Kenny Cooper hit a three at the end of the third quarter as FRA ended the quarter on a 11-5 run. 
FRA scored the first 11 points of the fourth quarter that cut the Wildcats’ lead to 56-53 with 5:38 remaining. That was the closest the game had been since BGA lead 5-2 in early minutes. 
“We looked up at the scoreboard, we were up 16, 18, 20 and it was almost like we were wanting the clock to go into turbo instead of finishing the game,” McKnatt said of his teams near collapse. “They hit some shots, the crowd got into the game and they seemed to feed off it.”
Moran continued to make plays in the final minutes to keep his team calm. McKnatt expects Moran to score his points, with 20 in the first half, but playing a complete game is what’s key for BGA.
“He scores  with the ball, but he had nine assists, two or three steals, he rebounds the basketball, keeps his teammates involved, and kept his turnovers down,” said McKnatt.
FRA got a superb game from Cooper leading the team with 22 points. Cooper’s 13 point third quarter boosted the Panthers back into the game. 
“He had big shot after big shot,” McKnatt said of Cooper. “Crap, I guess we got better because he had 23 the first game, so 22 tonight. Hopefully we can hold him to 21 next time we play. He’s a super player.”
Cooper’s back court running mate, Tori Smith was second on the team with 12 points. 6 foot 7 center, Rob Marberry only scored 9 but caused big problems on defense with his reach and athleticism. 
Moran shot 10-12 from the free throw line and added 5 3-pointers on his way to 31 points for BGA. Forward Zac Wracher scored 8 points in the paint and a 3-pointer for his 11 points to go with 8 rebounds.
FRA girls hold off the Lady Wildcats, 32-29
Caroline Abbott’s game-tying corner three went in-and-out with five seconds to go as FRA avoided overtime in the 32-29 game.
The Lady Wildcats overcame a 19-10 halftime deficit to take a 26-24 lead heading into the fourth quarter. BGA’s offense sputtered as the Lady Panthers shot 6-7 from the free throw line in the last 3:50. 
FRA center Kennedi Bell scored 12 points and got help with eight points on the wing from Catera Sawyers. Allison Cowie lead BGA and the game with 16 points, scoring nine in the third quarter.

Posted on: 1/17/2014


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