Eagles win first Scholarship Tournament title
AHOSKIE – With nine seconds remaining in the championship game of the Lt. Nick Brantley Scholarship Tournament and the score tied at 41, Northeast Academy senior Hunter Deloatch was sent to the foul line for a 1-plus-1.
He and fellow starter Jay Baughan had only been back on the court for 15 seconds. Both took the bench in the third quarter after picking up their fourth foul.
Deloatch sank both foul shots to give the Eagles a 43-41 lead. Lawrence took the inbounds up court and Chad Whitehead drove the lane but missed a shot at the buzzer as the Warriors fell 43-41.
“In both games we let leads get away and turned the game into a struggle,” said Eagles’ Head Coach John Brown. “I have to give credit to the other teams for what they did, but our kids responded and came back to win both games.”
Deloatch was named Tournament MVP. Baughan and Jeremy Parker were named to the All-Tournament team as was Lawrence’s Daniel Oliver.
Parker got the Eagles on the board in the first, putting Deloatch’s pass in the basket for three. Oliver scored from the top of the key to tie the score. The Eagles scored the next seven points to take a 10-3 advantage.
A bucket by Oliver was answered by Deloatch. Oliver sank two foul shots and Shane Stevens to a steal to the hoop, pulling the Warriors within three (12-9). Brandon Futrell hit a free throw and Deloatch took James Pope’s steal to the hoop as Northeast took a 15-9 lead into the second quarter.
The teams exchanged points for the first four minutes of the quarter.
Holden Ratzlaff converted a three-point play and added a basket to tie the score at 22. Chase Stevens’ bucket gave the Warriors their first lead of the night.
Parker scored a trey and a layup, moving the Eagles back out front. Oliver sank two foul shots and Whitehead converted a three-point play to give Lawrence a 29-27 lead. Pope’s bucket just before the buzzer sent the teams to the locker room tied at 29.
Lawrence outscored Northeast 8-3 in the third quarter to take a 37-32 lead. The lead could have been higher, but the Warriors shot 2-of-10 from the line after hitting 6-of-7 in the first half.
Davis Harrell took Pope’s steal to the basket for two and Jud Smith scored from the paint to cut the Warrior lead to one. Whitehead scored consecutive buckets to stretch the lead back out to five. Brandon Futrell cut the lead to two with a three-pointer and Smith sank two fouls shots, tying the score at 41 with 5:26 left on the clock.
Lawrence missed two free throws with 4:01 in the game and Northeast called a timeout. The Eagles held the ball for the next 3:26 until Brown called another timeout.
“We had struggled shooting all night and had two starters on the bench. If we could get the clock under a minute we could get the starters back in and they could play aggressively, not tentatively,” explained Brown.
Deloatch and Baughan re-entered the game and 29 seconds later Northeast held up their first Lt. Nick Brantley Scholarship Tournament championship trophy.
Parker led the Eagles with 15 points followed by Deloatch with 10. Oliver led all scorers with 18 points, including 10 in the second quarter.