ROGERSVILLE – Colten McLain’s layup off a turnover in the final minute lifted Rogersville City School to a wild, 39-37 victory over Surgoinsville in a highly-contested game Thursday at RCS.
There were 10 lead changes and four ties in the game. RCS twice held leads of six – 8-2 and 24-18 – but Surgoinsville rallied each time to take a lead.
The Eagles’ first lead-changing rally came at the end of the first quarter and first play of the second period, a pull-up jumper by Logan Johnson that gave Surgoinsville a 10-9 lead.
Zayden Hayes of the Warriors responded by converting a spin move three-point play, putting RCS back up 12-10.
Hayes then answered Dakota Reeves’ three with a trey of his own – and second of the half – to put RCS back in front, 15-13.
After a free throw by Johnson, SMS teammate Roman Borghetti-Metz hit a jumper to lift the Eagles back in the lead, 16-15.
The Warriors then closed the first half on a 9-2 run, including two baskets by Keaton Lawson and five points by McLain, including 3-of-4 from the line, as RCS took a 24-18 lead into the break.
Lucas Case and Johnson scored two baskets each in the third as the Eagles doubled up the Warriors, 10-5, to close to within 29-28 entering the final period.
Borghetti-Metz hit a three less than a minute into the fourth to give the lead back to the Eagles, 31-29.
A drive by Hayes tied it briefly, until Case hit two free throws to push SMS back in front, 33-31. Single free throws by RCS’s McLain and Hayes tied the game again at 33 with 3:23 to play.
Reeves broke it with two foul shots for SMS, 35-33, only to see it tied at 35-35 seven seconds later on a drive by Hayes.
The game remained tied until RCS’s Devin Hamblen hit one of two free throws to put the Warriors ahead, 36-35, with 1:37 remaining.
Twenty-three seconds later, Brett Clark gave the Eagles their final lead of the night, 37-36, with 1:14 to play in the game.
The two teams battled until the Warriors forced an Eagle turnover, which McLain converted into a layup to put RCS back in front, 38-37, with 33 seconds left in the game.
The Warriors forced another Eagle turnover on the ensuing possession and McLain went to the line and hit one of two free throws to extend the Eagles’ lead to 39-37 with 14.8 seconds left.
The Eagles got the ball on a wild scramble in the final seconds and called a timeout with 0.7 seconds to play, but could not get a shot off on the inbounds play.
Hayes led RCS with 15 points. McLain added 12 and Lawson seven.
Case paced SMS with 11. Johnson added 10 and Reeves nine.