Town Crier Sports Staff
Buffalo Island Central decided after two earlier season losses against Riverside to slow the pace in the two teams' third meeting of the year in hopes of changing the outcome. The strategy worked for much of the first quarter, but Riverside took control in the second half and eventually rolled to a 42-23 2A-3 conference victory Tuesday night at Monette.
BIC held the ball in the early going and took a 6-3 lead late in the first quarter, thanks to a pair of three pointers by senior Jordan Griggs. The Mustangs controlled the tempo by holding the ball near mid-court, but Riverside rallied behind a pair of inside buckets from Glen Graham and a running 40-footer at the buzzer by Garrett Weaver to close the quarter with the Rebels up 10-6.
Riverside stretched their lead to 12-6 on a short jumper by Weaver with 5:41 left in the half, but the Mustangs came right back when Griggs hit his third trey of the game, cutting the Rebel lead to 12-9. After a Riverside miss, BIC held the ball the rest of the half with neither team scoring.
Riverside began the third quarter with a three pointer from senior Casey Hook to stretch their lead to 15-9. A pair of Griggs free throws cut the Rebel lead to 15-11 with 7:17 left in the quarter. Riverside decided to hold the ball on their next possession as BIC stood back in a zone defense. The Mustangs eventually fouled Graham with 3:25 left in the quarter, sending the 6'8" senior to the line where he made both free throws to give Riverside a 17-11 lead. The Rebels outscored BIC 6-2 the rest of the quarter to take a 23-13 lead into the final frame.
Weaver began the final quarter with a long three pointer to give the Rebels their biggest lead of the night, 26-13. Riverside outscored BIC 10-2 over the next 4:00 to break the game open as Weaver finished off the flurry with back to back treys, the second coming with 2:56 left in the game to push the Rebel lead to 36-15.
Weaver finished the night with 16 points, including four three pointers. Hook scored nine points, all on treys, while Graham added eight. Bradley Tucker and Dewayne Schrader tallied three points apiece, Cody Richardson netted two while Cody O'Guinn chipped in one to round out the Rebel attack.
Riverside finished 10-15 from the foul line and hit eight treys on the night.
Griggs led the Mustangs with 11 points. Trevor Matheny scored six, Heath Hawkins netted three points, Shane Barnes tallied two while Lee Birdno added one point.
The Mustangs hit 5-6 free throws and drilled five three pointers on the night.
"We did a good job of keeping our composure tonight and never let them really have the lead," said Riverside Coach Buster Campbell. "They felt like that was their best chance to win the game, and that's okay. We decided when we got the lead early in the second half that two could play that game, so we held onto the ball and pulled them out of the zone. Hook and Weaver both hit some big shots from the outside that helped break the game open. I think we are really starting to turn the corner. I am happy with the way we are working together, especially the last couple of games."
"We played pretty well in the first half but they took a 10 point lead in the third quarter and pulled away from there," said BIC Coach Dion Hargrove. "Riverside has a nice club. We had the tempo like we wanted it in the early going, but they have a good team. When the smoke cleared up Riverside was ahead by 19 points."
In junior high action, Riverside rolled to a 48-34 victory.
Morgan Fletcher scored 15 points while Jake Love added 14 to lead the Rebels.
Riverside held an 18-5 lead after the first period and went into the dressing room with a 26-16 lead at the half. The Rebels took a 36-20 advantage into the fourth quarter.
Josh Anderson scored eight points, Luke Moyer netted seven while Cole Winford added four.
Jeremy Smith led BIC with nine points while Dillon Hargrove netted seven. Mark Stone scored six, Ben Cole tallied five, Wes Colbert had three while James Tate and Taylor Morgan added two points apiece.
Riverside finished the week with an 84-52 rout of Rector at Lake City.
The Rebels set a school record, pouring in 15 three pointers on the night, while senior guard Garrett Weaver set a single game three point record with eight.
Riverside led 27-16 after the first period and 38-28 at the half. The Rebels stretched their lead to 59-44 after three quarters before blowing the game open in the final period.
Weaver finished the night with 28 points, two four point plays and seven assists. Glen Graham scored 18 points and grabbed eight rebounds while Casey Hook pumped in 12 points. Bradley Tucker scored nine while Cody Richardson tallied eight points, dished out 10 assists and had five steals. Travis Mays closed out the Rebel scoring with three points.
Riverside won the junior game 45-21 behind Josh Anderson's 13 points. Morgan Fletcher also hit double digits with 11 points. Jake Love scored seven, Cole Winford netted six, Luke Moyer tallied three, Jake Emery and James Boness scored two each while Chris Hood added one.
Cody Hagen led Rector with 15 points.
Riverside will return to action Tuesday night when they host Crowley's Ridge Academy at Caraway. The Rebels will travel to Turrell to take on the Rockets in another league battle Friday night.
BIC will play host to Cross County Tuesday night before traveling to Marked Tree for another 2A-3 conference match-up Friday night against the Indians.