Phil Campbell boys edge out Red Bay
Phil Campbell and Red Bay met in a game Friday night that would be decided by three points late.
The Bobcats ended up winning 50-47, but the game was both close and hard-fought throughout the contest.
“It was a good game played by two good teams,” Phil Campbell head coach Will Copeland said. “[Red Bay] made some big shots.”
The Tigers and Bobcats traded field goals early on. Red Bay had a 6-2 lead halfway through the first before Skeeter Benford hit Phil Campbell’s first three of the night.
The Bobcats battled back to take a 10-9 lead with a minute remaining in the first, but Red Bay hit another field goal after a block by Hunter Childers to take the lead at the end of the first.
Benford hit back-to-back three-pointers near the start of the second, and Colton Vickery added two more points for the Bobcats on a put-back jumper.
Ben Hubbard ended the short drought for Red Bay by hitting a shot from behind the arc. Phil Campbell had a 22-16 advantage midway through the second.
“All night long we had an uphill battle,” Red Bay head coach Greg Cash said. “We would get close, but then they’d come back.”
Both teams went through some trouble hitting shots late in the second. The Tiger went into a full-court press, and a lay-up by Cole Rooker and a three by Austin Malone brought Red Bay to within two points at halftime, with Phil Campbell leading 23-21.
Childers hit a field goal to tie the game at 23-23 at the start of the third, and a three-point shot by Brett McDowell gave Red Bay its first lead since early in the first quarter at 26-23.
The Tigers did not have the lead long. Ben Stancil caught fire for the Bobcats and hit three shots from downtown in a row.
Phil Campbell continued this run through the third, taking a 43-36 lead into the fourth quarter.
The Tigers got two-straight lay-ups to close the gap, one from Michael Ramirez and the other from McDowell. Matt Montgomery hit a free throw after being fouled by Stancil to bring Red Bay within two points at 43-41.
Jamie Dorroh hit a put-back jumper for Phil Campbell, but Ramirez hit a pull-up jumper for Red Bay seconds later. Ramirez then tied the game at 45 all with 3:32 remaining in the game on another lay-up for the Tigers.
Benford hit a lay-up for Phil Campbell, and an offensive foul on Hubbard erased a three by Ramirez. Hubbard made up for it by tying the game again at 47-47 on a lay-up.
Vickery scored the final three points of the game by completing an and one with just 10.2 seconds to go.
A last chance three by Hubbard missed, and Phil Campbell picked up the close win.
“Our players played good offense,” Copeland said. “I’m proud of them. They stepped up and accomplished our goal of being able to host the area tournament.”
Benford had 17 points and four threes for Phil Campbell. Stancil had 15 with three shots made from behind the arc. Also scoring for the Bobcats were Vickery (9), Jeremy Reed (4), Cameron Harris (3) and Craig Saint (2).
Ramirez led the Tigers in scoring with 15. Hubbard had 10 and McDowell totaled 7. Also scoring for Red Bay were Childers (6), Malone (6), Austin Sparks (2) and Montgomery (1).