Prairie View kept its MAIS District 3-2A championship hopes alive with a 52-49 Senior Night victory over Riverdale on Tuesday night. Now the Spartans are depending on the Rebels for some help.
Prairie View (15-11, 5-3) and Riverdale are now tied for second in the district standings, one game behind Central Hinds. District play concludes Thursday with a quadruple header at River Oaks. Riverdale and Central Hinds play at 3:30 p.m. (girls) and 4:45 (boys), followed by Prairie View vs. River Oaks at 6 (girls) and 7:15 (boys).
A Riverdale victory over Central Hinds and a Prairie View win over River Oaks would create a three-way tie for first place. In the event that Central Hinds and Prairie View win Thursday, creating a tie for second place, the Spartans would be awarded second place by virtue of a 2-1 edge in the season series with the Rebels.
“We beat Riverdale Tuesday night, now we have to be their biggest fans Thursday night,” Prairie View coach Joseph Waller said.
In Tuesday night's game, the Spartans saw a 50-43 lead with 3:05 shrink to 50-49, before Tyler Jones stroked both ends of a one and one with seven seconds remaining.
Riverdale's desperation 3-pointer at the buzzer was well off the mark.
“Tyler Jones hit two huge free throws for us,” Waller said. “This was was a big win for us because it kept us alive for the district championship. It was a great game. Our side of the stands were full and the student body was really into it, which is always good. It was a great atmosphere.”
Riverdale led throughout the first half, going up 13-7 at the end of the first quarter and 27-22 at halftime.
“They came out in a triangle and two on (Brendan) Tubbs and B.J. (Brandon Jacobs) and slowed us down at the beginning,” Waller said. “You see Riverdale and they don't look like much. They don't have anybody on the floor over six feet tall. But when they get on the court, it's amazing. They're well-coached and disciplined on offense and they get after you on the defensive end.”
Prairie View went up 42-41 at the end of the third quarter.
“I thought our full court man-to-man (press) slowed down their offensive rhythm,” Waller said. “They don't have a lot of size, but they design their plays to create space. When we went into the full court man, we were able to speed up the game and our athleticism came into play.”
Tubbs was the Spartans' offensive pacesetter with 17 points and Jones amassed 15 points, a dozen rebounds and four blocked shots. Prairie View also received nine points from Jacobs, four apiece from Kory McLarrin and Matt Reed and three from Tyler Netherland.
Page 2 of 2 - Scoring for Riverdale were Tanner Lee with 19, Hogan Nealy with 13, Ty Hester and Jacob Hay with six and Joe Hayes with five.