Town Crier Sports Staff
Rather than warming up during halftime of Monday night's 2A-3 District Tournament opener at Monette, the Turrell Rockets decided they needed the extra time to adjust their game plan against Buffalo Island Central, who held a 31-28 advantage. The strategy paid off, as the Rockets rallied in the third quarter, outscoring the Mustangs 23-9 on their way to a 70-52 come from behind victory, ending BIC's season.
Turrell held an 18-12 lead after the first period, but BIC roared back in the second period with the help of back to back treys by senior Trevor Matheny to cut the deficit to 22-21 at the 5:25 mark. Turrell stretched their lead back to five, 26-21, with a pair of free throws and an offensive stick-back by Mario Reel.
BIC came right back when Shane Barnes connected on a 15-foot jumper, cutting the lead to three, and tied the score on another Matheny three pointer with 2:23 left before intermission. Matheny gave the Mustangs their first lead of the game, 27-26, with a free throw at the 1:53 mark, but Turrell responded with a 12-footer by Theo Turner to regain the lead 28-27.
The Mustangs closed the half, scoring the final four points as Brandon Atkeison connected from 10-feet out before Matt Honnoll scored on a power move from the inside, giving BIC the three point halftime advantage.
Turrell stormed out of the gate in the third period, scoring 12 straight points to take a 40-31 lead at the 4:40 mark. BIC finally got on the board when Matt Taylor connected from beyond the three point arc at the 4:03 mark to cut the Rocket advantage to 40-34. Bruce Delaney answered with a driving lay-up, but the Mustangs came back with a basket by Atkeison and a three pointer from Barnes to close to within 42-39 with 2:48 left in the period.
Freshman forward Paris Jeans answered Barnes' trey with a three point play of his own, which also included a technical foul against BIC. Jeans made 1-2 technical foul shots to put Turrell up 46-39. Terrance Selvy matched Jeans three point play at the 43 second mark to give the Rockets a double digit lead, 49-39.
Trailing by 11 entering the final frame, the Mustangs tried to rally when Barnes and Matheny nailed back to back triples to cut the Rocket lead to 53-46 with 6:48 remaining in the game, but the Rockets went on an 8-0 run to go ahead 61-46, putting the game away.
Selvy and Jeans led the Rockets with 16 points apiece while Jesse Hodges added 14 more.
Matheny closed his Mustang career with a team high 15 points while fellow senior Shane Barnes and sophomore Matt Taylor also hit double digits with 11 points apiece. Atkeison scored five while Jordan Griggs, who was plagued by foul trouble the majority of the game, was held to four points. Matt Honnoll, Heath Hawkins and Lee Birdno added two points each.
Matheny and Griggs were honored by being name to the All-Conference team.