Lakeside High School’s basketball team almost made things interesting in the region Friday night at Evans.
Trailing by 12 with just over four minutes left in regulation, the Panthers stormed back to tie the game at 54, sending it to overtime. The Knights would not be denied, however, coming up with a last-second defensive stop to win 60-59.
The win gave the Knights (17-4, 5-0) a stranglehold on Region 2A-AAAAA.
With a chance to close to a game behind the Knights, the Panthers (7-13) instead fell to 2-3 in the region, losing by a point to the Knights for a second time this season.
“It was a huge win to go 5-0 in the region and get some space at the top,” said Evans’ Jacob Buchanan, who finished with 11 points including two in the overtime.
It wasn’t decided until the final seconds of overtime.
As Lakeside’s BJ Raymond sliced to the basket for the potential game-winning shot with three seconds to play, he was quickly surrounded and the Knights came up with a held ball for a turnover and the game.
The Knights led 51-39 with 4:20 left, but Raymond scored on three consecutive possessions to ignite the Panthers’ comeback that tied the game at 54 with 43 seconds to play on two free throws by Sam Powell.
The Panthers defense did a good job of using fouls at the end, and a half-court shot at the buzzer was all the Knights could muster.
Damian Foreman led the Knights with 18 points and K’Lon Lovett added 10.
Lakeside’s Powell led all scorers with 23 points, Luke Harmon added 15 and Raymond had 11.
With losses in their past two games, including a tough 58-54 setback to Greenbrier, Lady Knights head coach Ryan Morningstar knew it was important for his team to get back in the win column. Backed by the one-two punch of Jasmine Stone and Allysha McFarland, the Lady Knights did just that, beating Lakeside 73-63.
The win raised the Lady Knights record to 12-7, 4-1 in Region 2A-AAAAA, possibly setting the stage for a first-place showdown with Greenbrier Friday night.
Leading 18-14 at the end of the first quarter, the Lady Knights quickly broke it open with an 11-4 run to start the second quarter. Stone, who scored a game-high 27 points, scored the first nine points on two fastbreak layups, with assists from McFarland (20 points), a 3-pointer, a jumper from the middle of the lane and a putback of a McFarland miss.
“Getting both involved early makes it hard to key on one and they have the green light to shoot,” said Lady Knights coach Ryan Morningstar of Stone and McFarland.
A late 7-0 run by the Lady Panthers (7-13, 0-5) cut the lead to 37-27 and they seemed to have the momentum going into the half until Stone buried an off-balance 3-pointer as the buzzer sounded.
Elyssa Melton chipped in with 15 for the Lady Knights.
Rosalyn Talley led the Lady Panthers with 25 points, Holly Sweeting had 12 and Bria Baker and Clarissa Hopkins each had 11.
Around the county
• The Greenbrier girls (15-5, 4-1) remained in a first-place tie with Evans with a 44-29 win over Grovetown (12-7, 2-3). In Region 3B-AA play, Harlem’s Lady Bulldogs were downed by Westside 75-23. Olivia Fitzgerald led the Lady Bulldogs with seven points. At Augusta Prep, the Lady Cavaliers improved to 14-3 with a 47-32 win over Pinewood Christian, led by Amanda Murphy’s 20 points. At Augusta Christian, the Lady Lions fell to Heathwood Hall 95-40.
• In boys play, Augusta Christian came from behind to beat Heathwood Hall 37-35 to go to 16-4, 2-3 in SCISA 1-AAA. Calvin Taylor led the Lions with nine points. At Augusta Prep, the Cavaliers’ Caleb Lifsey led the team with 17 points as they defeated Pinewood Christian 48-38 to improve to 11-6, 4-3 in GISA’s Region 4-AAA. At Greenbrier, the Wolfpack (3-15, 1-4) got its first Region 2A-AAAAA win with a 46-42 victory over Grovetown (6-14, 2-3). In Region 3B-AA, Harlem lost to Westside 81-25, falling to 12-11, 1-4. Dylan Farmer led the Bulldogs with 10 points.