Red Bay surges back to defeat Bobcats
by Keith Ledbetter for the FCT
It was pretty much a repeat of the last game between Red Bay and Phil Campbell last Friday night as the Tigers came back from a nine point deficit to defeat the Bobcats.
Red Bay’s win puts them at the number two spot in the area behind Sulligent.
“It was a huge win and it locked up second place in the area,” said Tiger head coach Matt Noah.
A 30-minute delay at halftime when fire alarms went off in the Phil Campbell gym also caused some interruption in the Tiger momentum.
“I was worried about that,” added Noah. Something like that will distract kids a lot and get them out of their normal routine.
“We struggled to overcome that in the third quarter.”
Red Bay scored only four points in the third quarter, but the biggest difference in the game was that Phil Campbell’s seven points in the fourth came from only free throws.
Red Bay outscored Phil Campbell in the fourth 15-7 to tie the game at 44 all-sending it into an overtime period.
The Tigers outscored the Bobcats 12-2 in overtime to take the win.
The first quarter was back and fourth with the Tigers finally taking the 8-7 lead on a Dylan Gresham basket.
Tate Ozbirn added another two pointer and Jesus Kelley tossed in a free throw to put Red Bay up 11-7 with just over four minutes remaining in the first.
Phil Campbell’s Bell added a free throw, Roberson hit a long three pointer and Anthony tie it at 13-13 on a drive down the lane.
Red Bay’s Gresham put Red Bay up by two, 15-13 at the end of the quarter.
A 25-25 tie was broken with just 13 seconds remaining in the half when the Bobcats’ Thomas connected on a three from the side-sending Phil Campbell into the half with a 28-25 advantage over Red Bay.
The Tigers put together seven unanswered points midway through the fourth to cut Phil Campbell’s 37-29 fourth quarter lead down to only three points, 41-38.
Nick Thorn connected on a two point basket, Dylan Gresham added two free throws, and Chandler Allen hit a three pointer for Red Bay. The Bobcats tossed in two free throws, and Red Bay’s Dakota Hester sank a two point basket off the glass to hold the Bobcats at a three point lead.
In the final seconds of regulation play, Phil Campbell’s Williams sank a free throw, Red Bay’s Gresham added two from the line, and Tate Ozbirn tied the game at 44-44 on a drive down the lane.
Red Bay had an opportunity to take the win but missed foul shots with just seconds remaining.
Red Bay’s Nick Thorn led off the overtime period with a three pointer, Jesus Kelley completed a three point play, and also completed two additional technical foul shots.
Red Bay’s Buddy Kuykendall sealed the win with a final two pointer. Bell collected Phil Campbell’s only two points in overtime with foul shots.
Williams and Bell had 11 each for Phil Campbell. Thomas scored 10, Tackett and Roberson added five each, Anthony scored four.
Gresham led Red Bay with 18, Kelley and Thorn had 11 each, Ozbirn had six, Hester scored five, Allen had three, and Kuykendall scored two.
The opening game of the Varsity Boys Franklin County tournament will be on Tuesday, Jan. 13, at 8 p.m. Belgreen (#4 seed) will play Vina (#5 seed). The winner of that game will advance to play top-seed Tharptown on Thursday, Jan. 15, at 8 p.m.
Phil Campbell (#2 seed) will play Red Bay (#3) seed on Friday, Jan. 16, at 8 p.m. The finals of the Varsity Boys division will be Saturday, Jan. 17, at 8 p.m.
All games are hosted by Red Bay.