Beekman 55, Cedar Creek 54
Keith Haynes drained the back end of a double bonus with 4.9 seconds remaining to send Beekman past Cedar Creek 55-54 Saturday afternoon in the Sterlington Shootout.
Besides snapping the Tigers' 10-game losing streak, Haynes' game-winning free throw capped an improbable comeback.
Beekman trailed by as many as 11 (45-34) early in the fourth quarter and was down 51-43 with just over four minutes to play.
Two buckets by Malachi Evans sparked a 5-0 run, which reduced the deficit to 51-48.
Preston Tullos and Evans then exchanged goals, bringing the score to 53-50 at the two minute mark.
Christian Norris made the second side of a shooting foul to put the Cougars up four.
Haynes, who scored eight of his 11 points in the final quarter, made two clutch buckets prior to hitting the decisive free shot. After delivering a floater on the Tigers' next possession, Haynes squared the score at 54 with 52 seconds remaining on a driving layup.
Cedar Creek missed two free throws on its next offensive sequence, and Beekman spent a timeout with 25 ticks left in regulation.
Beekman ran the clock down to 4.9 seconds before the Cougars sent Haynes to the line for the double bonus.
After Haynes' second shot fell through the bottom of the net, the Cougars' desperation 3-point heave was well off the mark.
In a game that was back and forth from the outset, Cedar Creek led 13-11 at the end of the first frame and the Tigers held the upper hand at halftime, 25-22.
With the score tied at 32, Christian Norris produced the final five points on takeaways off the press. Norris set up his own basket with a steal, then hit the bullseye from long distance, propelling the Cougars to a 37-32 lead entering the fourth quarter.
Picking up where he left off, Norris was responsible for every point in an 8-2 flurry to start the final period. Norris' second straight trifecta padded the Cougars' lead to 45-34 — the widest margin of the contest.
Playing without injured leading scorer Daryl Seay for the second straight game, the Tigers benefitted from a breakout game from Evans. Besides finishing with 21 points, the eighth grade center clearly reached double figures in rebounds and blocked or altered numerous shots (game stats other than those kept on the scorebook were not immediately available).
Haynes supported Evans with 11 points. Rounding out the scoring for Beekman (4-12) were Jaquinten Killian with seven, Xavier Hargraves with six, Xavier Lewis with five, Javontae Chandler with three and Joey Chain with two.
The Creek (5-11) loss offset a 25-point effort by Spillers. Norris scored 14 of his 16 points in the second half, Chandler Hay contributed six, Preston Tullos five and Blake Moss two.
Cedar Creek ... 13 9 15 17—54
Beekman ......... 11 14 7 23—55
CEDAR CREEK (5-11) — Landon Spillers 25, Christian Norris 16, Chandler Hay 6, Preston Tullos 5, Blake Moss 2.
BEEKMAN (4-12) — Malachi Evans 21, Keith Haynes 11, Jaquinten Killian 7, Xavier Hargraves 6, Xavier Lewis 5, Javantae Chandler 3, Joey Chain 2.
Three-point goals — Cedar Creek 6 (Norris 3, Tullos 1, Hay 1, Spillers 1), Beekman 0. Total fouls — 17, Cedar Creek 23. Fouled out — Moss, Tullos, Haynes. Technical — none.