You can certainly call these McGavock Raiders battle tested.
The host Raiders pulled off a 74-68 win over Overton, whom many felt was the best team in Nashville, in the semifinals of the Region 6-AAA basketball tournament Tuesday. It came fresh off a 62-61 upset win over host Franklin in the quarters last Saturday.
Senior guard Hollis Edwards hit tie-breaking soft jumper over the Overton defense with 12 seconds left, the ball bouncing twice before settling in the nets as the Raider fans erupted in bedlam. That gave McGavock a 70-68 lead, then the Raiders sealed it with four free throws seconds later, two coming on a technical foul in the final second.
“It’s the biggest shot I’ve ever hit, no doubt,’’ said the 5-10 Edwards, who finished with eight points. “When I drove, I was looking to get it inside to Jordan Flint, but he was covered, so I just pulled up and knocked it down. We were down, but we kept fighting, we played hard, we never quit, and we got the W.’’
It looked bleak for the Raiders with 1:50 left as Overton pulled into a 65-60 lead before Flint hit a huge three. After Justin Perry missed two free throws, Aaron Simms scored to tie it 65-65.
After Edwards’ big hoop, Overton missed and he was fouled with 9.3 seconds left. After Edwards missed the second of a two-shot foul, leaving it 71-68, Overton rebounded. But Bobcat guard Mookie Betts’ long three bounced out, and Christian Little hit two clinching free throws.
Betts finished with a game-high 26 points, but it wasn’t enough as it brought a heartbreaking end to Overton’s season, the Bobcats finishing 28-4. Perry added 12.
“I was so proud that we were so resilient and we didn’t quit when things looked bad,’’ said Coach Marlin Simms. “Hollis knocked down a huge shot, the biggest one he’s ever hit. Even though we were a little undersized, we hung in there on the boards.’’
Little led McGavock with four threes and 18 points, scoring 12 of his points in the second half, and Simms added 12. The win sets up a rematch of old district rivals McGavock and Hunters Lane for the championship Thursday night.
Hunters Lane holds off Ravenwood
Leading just 28-24 at the half, Hunters Lane racked up a 19-point third quarter, then held off Ravenwood 62-52 in the first semifinal Wednesday.
The Warriors (25-4) put Antwan Van Lier at the controls in the third quarter, then Joseph Wilbert on board in the fourth.
Van Lier, one of the heroes in Hunters Lane’s region semifinal win over Franklin last year, scored eight of his game-high 21 points in the third period, then Wilbert took over, scoring eight of his 14 points in the final period.
“Ravenwood is a very scary team with the way they shoot the ball and play defense,’’ said Coach Anthony Sewell. “With our season on the line, I think our guys just started to realize they had pick things up for us to be successful.’’
Evan Forhetz hit two threes in the third quarter, helping Ravenwood inch back into the game and he wound up with 21 to lead the Raptors.
Other tourney action
• District champ Maplewood blew out Hume-Fogg 80-56 to reach the Region 5-AA finals and the Panthers will meet M.L. King in the finals Thursday at East Lit. The Royals beat Greenbrier 51-41.
• Franklin Road Academy and Donelson Christian Academy’s girls are both in action as the DII-A state tournament gets under way Thursday at Lipscomb Allen Arena. The USN boys, making their second straight trip play in the final game of the day.
Top game Friday sends big rivals Ensworth and MBA against each other at 12:30 p.m. in a showdown in the DII-AA boys bracket. Ensworth beat MBA twice, both by three points, in two very exciting games last month.
At McGavock High
7 p.m.—Hillsboro vs. Glencliff, girls final
7 p.m.—Hunters Lane vs. McGavock, boys final.
At East Literature
7 p.m.—Macon County vs. CPA, girls final
7 p.m.—M.L. King vs. Maplewood, boys final.
DII state tournament pairings
At Lipscomb Allen Arena
Thursday’s Class A semifinals
11 a.m. – FRA vs. Knox Webb, girls
12:30 p.m. – Knox Webb vs. St. George’s, boys
2:15 p.m.—DCA vs. Harding Academy, girls
3:45 p.m. – Webb School vs. USN, boys
Friday’s Class AA semifinals
11 a.m.—St. Benedict vs. Ensworth, girls
12:30 p.m.—MBA vs. Ensworth, boys
2:15 p.m. – Pope JPII vs. Briarcrest, girls
3:45 p.m.—McCallie vs. Mem. CBHS, boys