McFarlin's late free throw punches BIC's ticket to regional
Fourth seeded Buffalo Island Central waged a back and forth battle with top seeded Cotter in Monday night’s quarterfinal action of the 2A-2 District Tournament at Lepanto. Senior forward Andrew McFarlin knocked down the game winning free throw with just two ticks left on the clock to send the Mustangs past the Warriors, 48-47. The victory earned the Mustangs a spot in this week’s regional tournament at Marked Tree. BIC will open regional play as a three seed and will take on two seeded Clarendon Thursday night at 8:30.
Cotter led 7-1 midway through the first period before the Mustangs rallied behind the scoring of Canon Walling. Walling’s triple at the 1:51 mark put BIC on top, 8-7. Cotter bounced back and went ahead after the first break when Dawson Burns dropped in a 15-footer at the buzzer, giving the Warriors an 11-9 lead.
Noah Teeter sparked BIC in the second stanza, scoring five straight points to put the Mustangs back on top, 16-15. Cotter rallied, getting consecutive buckets from Landon Martin to take a three-point cushion, 19-16, at the 2:32 mark. BIC outscored Cotter over the final two minutes of the half, 6-2, to grab a 22-21 edge at intermission.
The Mustangs took control in the third quarter, building a six-point advantage, capped off by Walling’s long three pointer at the 4:23 mark. The Warriors charged back, going on a 9-2 run to take a 35-34 lead into the final frame. Burns’ triple as the third quarter horn sounded put the Warriors on top.
Cotter put together a 7-2 spurt over a three-minute period in the fourth quarter to take a 46-41 lead with 3:05 left in the game. McFarlin canned a three from the top of the key at the 2:29 mark to close the gap to 46-44. Martin sank 1-2 foul shots for the Warriors, increasing their lead to 47-44 with 1:11 left, but McFarlin answered the bell for BIC again, draining another trey to knot the score at 47-all at the 1:02 mark. An offensive foul on Cotter’s next possession gave the ball back to BIC with 40 seconds left. BIC played for the last shot and worked the clock down to 10 seconds before calling time out to set up their final play. The Mustangs inbounded the ball to McFarlin out of the time out, and the senior drove the lane where he was fouled on a shot attempt with two ticks remaining. McFarlin missed the first foul shot, but canned the second. A desperation heave by Cotter missed the mark, giving the Mustangs the win.
McFarlin topped BIC with 18 points, including 11 in the final frame. Walling scored 11 while Chayse Carmichael had eight. Teeter tallied five, Devin Pemberton netted four while Blaine Wildy chipped in two points. BIC made 13-19 charity tosses and drilled five three pointers.
Cotter was led by Martin’s 15 points while Burns and Hunter Dearmore contributed nine points apiece. The Warriors sank 5-6 free throws and hit four treys.
In Thursday’s semifinal action, BIC fell to tournament host East Poinsett County, 59-42. Isiah Taylor and Jonathan Gilmore paced the Warriors with 15 points apiece. Walling dropped in a game high 18 to lead the Mustangs.
In Friday’s third place game, BIC defeated Sloan Hendrix 54-45. The Mustangs led 13-2 after the first break, 23-20 at the half and 37-33 entering the fourth quarter.
Walling and McFarlin led BIC with 16 and 14 points respectively. Jacob Smith paced the Greyhounds with 17 points while Jordan Dail added 13.
In girls action, Sloan Hendrix downed BIC 49-34 in Tuesday night’s first round action. Emily Luffman paced the Greyhounds with 10 points while Haddyn Hurst topped the Lady Mustangs, scoring 10 points.