Knights overcome early deficit to defeat Tigers, 57-39
Thursday, 31 January 2013 by Tony Adams
HARKER HEIGHTS-Although Belton was only about 25 minutes from their friendly confines, there was nothing friendly about the home floor at Harker Heights High School.
The Knights overcame a rough shooting first half to defeat the Tigers 57-39 in District 8-5A play.
Belton jumped on Harker Heights in the first quarter, taking a 10-9 lead. Thomas Barnes, Braden Hammond and Daniel Mills all scored in the first quarter to pace the Tigers.
The Knights recovered in the second quarter and outscored Belton 21-8 in the second quarter. Harker Heights received 11 points from Cameron Delaney and eight points from Andre Hughes in the quarter, as the Knights led at halftime 30-18.
"Delaney and Hughes were huge in the second quarter," said Belton coach Charlie Lewis. "It was great plays on their (Harker Heights) part. They ran their sets and we contested. They hit their shots. It was just great plays."
Harker Heights outscored the Tigers 28-21 in the final two quarters for the victory.
Delaney had a game-high 24 points to pace the Knights. Hughes pitched in 12 points for Harker Heights.
Mills scored nine point for the Tigers. Barnes and Andre Ewing had eight points each for Belton.
Though the score did not indicate it, Coach Lewis was impressed with his teams performance and effort.
"I am very pleased with our teams effort," said Lewis. "I told the guys to keep their head up."
The Tigers are back at Tiger Gym on Friday night as they take on Killeen Ellison.
Tigers fall in final seconds
Like Lake Belton, the Tigers' boys basketball team have hit high tides and low tides in the 2012-2013 District 8-5A season.
Midway sure did it's best to make Belton quite sea-sick in the back and forth see-sawing in the Panthers' 59-56 defeat of the Tigers at Tigers Gym Friday's nights.
Weathering the Panthers' 5-0 sprint from the game's tip-off, Daniel Mills scored the Tigers' first eight points of the game and guide the Tigers to a 12-7. Deshune Way and Jordan Colvin spurred a 14-0 run, spanning 5:20. The streak bridged into the second quarter, taking a 14-12 end of first quarter Midway advantage and moving the Panthers into a 21-12 lead at the end of the stretch.
Thomas Barnes and Braden Hammond sent Belton on 7-0, :44 run, to draw the Tigers within two points at 21-19 with 3:45 to play in the half. Kyle Battle would trade baskets with Way and Darius Littlejohn to end the half, with Midway taking a two-point, 25-23 advantage into the locker room.
Mills, Barnes, Battle and Jackson McGowan blitzed the Panthers the entire third quarter, outscoring Midway 19-8 in the third quarter. Belton led by as much as 12 points in the quarter and led after the third quarter 42-33.
"We began to start shooting jump shots and feeling good," said coach Charlie Lewis. "We started feeling comfortable. We were playing good defense, boxing out and it paid dividends. The crowd really got into it."
The Panthers started the fourth quarter on a 13-4 run, over the first 2:29 and tied the game 46-46. Following two successful free throws from Mills and field goals from Mills, Battle and McGowan, the Tigers were ahead 54-50 within 2:19 to play. Littlejohn hit a three-pointer and force two turnovers, converted into field goals by Chrishard Buhl and Ish Hook to put the Panthers back on top 57-54 with 1:10 to go. Mills converted a field goal with 21.2 seconds remaining. Following Way's conversion of two free throws to make the score 59-56, Mills drove the ball down the court. As he released the three-point shot at the buzzer, Way blocked the shot attempt and stole away the victory for Midway.
"We got to the point where we were not attacking basket in the fourth quarter," said Lewis. "We made the decision to rely on jump shots instead of attacking the basket. Once they got it, we were at a disadvantage with their big men and we had to foul them. They sunk their free shots."
Littlejohn had 16 points for Midway. Way contributed 15 points and Colvin chipped 11 for the Panthers.
Mills had 22 points in a strong Belton effort. Barnes had 18 points and Hammond poured in nine points for the Tigers.
The Tigers are in action Tuesday night in Harker Heights as they attempt to get back to their winning ways on the road against the Knights.