Tigers rally past Beavers, 73-71

WELLSVILLE -Every second matters.

That point was proven once again Wednesday night at Wellsville as the Wellsville and Beaver Local boys’ basketball team staged an instant classic. In the end, Nate Scott stole and inbounds pass and drove in for a layup as time expired giving the Tigers a thrilling, 73-71 victory over the Beavers.

Scott basket capped a 16-point comeback for Wellsville.

With the win, Wellsville improves to 12-3 on the season. The loss drops Beaver Local to 10-6.

Wellsville head coach Bug Thompson said it was a great high school basketball game.

“Yes it was. Yes it was,” he said. “I guess that is what they come to the game for. I guess that is why they buy a ticket.”

The Tigers defensive pressure proved to be on of the differences in the game.

“We had a tough time with their pressure at times,” Beaver Local head coach Jake Walgate said. “We struggled with at times, and at other times we were able to beat it and get a layup. We had a couple tough times inbounding the ball at the end. We had some tough times inbounding the ball on made shots.

“It was a tough night.”

Scott’s basket put the Tigers in front for the first time since they jumped out to an early 5-0 advantage to start the game.

Scott was one of two Tiger players to score in double digits in the game. Scott tallied a game-high 28 points to lead the way, while Seth Bradford delivered 23 points.

Also, Antonio Fultz netted eight points, Camden Douglas and Brendon Carr each contributed six points and Jordan Sloan ended up with two points.

Scott also collected seven assists and two steals. Douglas dished out 10 assists to go along with five rebounds. Bradford finished with five assists and four rebounds. Fultz also grabbed four rebounds, and Sloan picked up two steals.

Four players scored in double digits for the Beavers.

Jared Lyder recorded a team-high 21 points to lead the way, while Zack Mick contributed 14 points and Chase Hilliard and Troy Hudson each delivered 12 points.

Also for the Beavers, Matt Chamberlain netted eight points, and Josh Underwood ended up with four points.

Beaver Local led 57-55 entering the fourth quarter.

In the fourth, a 3-pointer by Scott pulled Wellsville to within 61-60. Later, Scott tied the game at 67 with a 3-pointer with 3:25 showing on the clock.

Two foul shots by Lyder put the visitors up 69-67, but Carr tied the score with a basket with 1:11 left to play in the game. Carr was fouled on the play, but he missed his foul shot to keep the game tied.

Then, Mick hit a mid-range jumper to put the Beavers out in front 71-69, but Carr scored to tie the game at 71. Beaver Local called a time out with 31.5 seconds left to try and set up its final play.

The Beavers ended up using multiple timeouts during the final sequence of the game, and the Tigers did a good job of deflecting the ball away forcing Beaver Local to repeatedly inbound the basketball. Beaver Local’s final inbounds pass came with 3.6 seconds left, but the ball was deflected and ended up in Scott’s hands and the junior raced to the other end of the court to barely beat the clock with the game-winning basket.

Asked if losing at the buzzer was a tougher loss than a normal won, Walgate replied, “they all stink. They all stink.”

Thompson let the final play play out instead of calling a timeout.

“If it was someone else with the ball I might have called timeout,” he said. “Nate was able to drive to the bucket. He took it strong instead of trying to draw a foul. He was able to get it up on the glass.”

Scott not only scored the game-winning basket, but he was able to shoot the Tigers back into the game in the second half.

The Beavers led 38-22 at halftime, but the Tigers turned things around in the second half. Wellsville outscored Beaver Local, 33-19, in the third quarter to pull within two points entering the fourth quarter.

“Scott hit six 3’s in the second half,” Thompson said. “He made four in the third quarter.

“Bradford scored 12 points in the third quarter. We were able to move the ball around a little bit. We hit some open shots. We were able to open up the middle. Bradford did a good job in the middle of the floor in the second half.”

The game was tied at 12 after the first quarter, but the Beavers outscored the Tigers, 26-10, in the second stanza to take control at the break.

Wellsville won the JV game, 59-32. Milik Pullie tallied 17 points for the Tigers, while Chandler Cornell collected 11 points for the Beavers.

Both teams are scheduled to return to the court Friday night. Beaver Local is scheduled to play at AAC-rival Niles, while Wellsville will play at home against Columbiana County-rival Columbiana.