Will Washington’s 15 points helped spur McIntosh to its seventh straight victory, this one 60-55 over Whitewater.
The McIntosh boys basketball team extended their winning streak to seven games after yet another late-game win, this time over the Whitewater by a final score of 60-55.
Freshman standout Jordan Lyons led all scorers in the game with 20 points, including eight down the stretch to help the Chiefs pull out the back and forth affair. The other half of McIntosh's freshman duo, Will Washington, also had a big game with 15 points.
"I don't think there is a situation that they can be in that they don't think they can pull it out --- that's the key," said McIntosh Coach Jason Eisele, whose team improved to 13-5 overall and a region 9-1 record in 4B-AAAA. "Regardless of the situation, all year long, we've been down by a lot in the fourth quarter and they just do what it takes. They will themselves to win."
"We're getting pretty good at winning these close games," said Eisele, whose team has seen eight games this season decided by four points or less. "We show that we can make the fewest mistakes down the stretch."
Darius Sharpe led a trio of Wildcats double-figure scorers with 16 points, followed by Phil Cofer who finished with 14 points and Juniad Olusesi who followed up with 13 points.
After McIntosh led 14-8 after the first quarter, Whitewater outscored them 35-24 over the next two quarters, mostly behind the efforts of Sharpe, Cofer, and Olusesi who combined for 27 points during that span spurring the Wildcats to a 45-38 lead going into the fourth quarter.
After Lyons's big first half and buzzer-beating 3-pointer gave McIntosh a 30-28 edge going into halftime, he went scoreless in the third quarter before coming on strong in the fourth. Lyons's go-ahead putback put the Chiefs up 56-55 with 35 seconds left in the game. Washington put them ahead for good with two free throws ten seconds later after Whitewater failed to convert the front end of a one-and-one on their possession.
"We always find a way to pull it out in the end," Eisele said. "But we have to clean up our play moving on into region tournament time."
McIntosh will look to keep up their winning ways when it travels to region foe Northgate on Tuesday while Whitewater will look to bounce back against Heard County.
The McIntosh girls basketball team made it 13 wins in a row after Whitewater by a final score of 55-41.
McIntosh's Gabby Seiler had an explosive performance with seven three pointers en route to a 24 point game. Despite her sharp shooting and the overall outcome, head coach David Dowse thinks the team could have played a whole lot better.
"We played horrible and we played embarrassing basketball," said Dowse, whose team improved to 16-1 overall and remain number one in region 4B-AAAA with a 9-1 mark. "There is a lot more to basketball than shooting threes and we did none of it. We were lucky to win."
Amanda Lindsey added 11 points and finished with three threes that helped bring the Chiefs overall total to 11 for the contest.
Despite the loss, Kaelyn Dugger finished with a double-double for Whitewater with 13 points and 12 rebounds while Rena Jenkins followed that up with 11 points.
"It's two things I always ask them to do and that's play hard and compete and I'll be happy. Tonight they played hard and competed," said Whitewater coach Rashad Muyee, whose team fell to 9-8 overall and 5-4 in the region. "I'm pleased overall that our girls are getting better and better and its the right time to start to get better ."
"I'm not pleased with the outcome, but I'm pleased with effort," Muyee added.
After trailing by a basket after the first quarter, Whitewater seemed poised to keep the game close but the Lady Chiefs erupted in the second quarter and eventually pushed the lead to double digits (27-17) by halftime.
The offensive explosion continued in the third quarter for McIntosh as they outscored Whitewater 21-8 in the period before letting the foot off the gas in the fourth as Whitewater went on a 16-7 run to close the game.