Cyclones finish second in conference

Published 11:28 pm Tuesday, February 3, 2015

by Bryce Phillips

Star Staff 

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After a nail biter of a game, the Sullivan South Rebels clinched first place in the Three Rivers Conference, winning 55-52 over the Cyclones.

“The conference championship is special,” Rebels coach Mark Pendleton said. “To go 11-1 in the Three Rivers with so many road games in January, to come home and clinch against Elizabethton, is something these guys will always remember.”

At the end of the third, EHS’ Hunter Greene sank two free throws to put the Cyclones up 40-38 going into the fourth.

At the opening of the final frame, South’s Heath Harmon hit a basket to tie things up at 40-40. The Cyclones answered with back-to-back baskets from Austin Cornett and Conley Bowers to put the Cyclones back on top 44-40, before the Rebs came alive, going on a nine-point run to push South ahead 49-44.

Bo Pless hit a triple to put the Cyclones within three. With just 22.2 seconds left in regulation, Cornett hit a key triple to push the Rebels up 54-52.

With just 18.2 seconds left, the Cyclones had one more chance to win, but a defensive stop by the Rebels ended EHS’s chances.

“They are a good team and they have a lot seniors,” Cyclones’ coach Lucas Honeycutt said. “I thought down the stretch they rebounded well. I thought, with Blair picking up his fourth foul late, I thought we should have capitalized on that.”

“Down the stretch we had a few chances there to get rebounds on the free throw line,” he said. “We made some lane violations there. Those are just mistakes we can’t make at this point in the season.”

The Cyclones came out hot in the first frame as they ended the quarter up 23-12. Pless and Michael Robinson both put up ten in the first period.

“We came out strong, and we have done that before,” Honeycutt said. “Michael Robinson, who is just a sophomore, came out hitting strong. He was a key to our run there in the first.”

In the second, the Cyclones were outscored 17-10, sending the teams into the half with the Rebels up 32-30.

With the loss to South, the Cyclones took second in the Three Rivers

Pless ended the night with the game high of 15 points. Bowers came in with 14.

On the Rebels’ side of the ball, Headrick led with 12.

Friday the Cyclones will travel to Science Hill, who the Cyclones defeated at the beginning of the season. However, this time around, the Hilltoppers will be a different team.

“They are a lot more athletic,” Honeycutt said. “They are able to the push the ball. Some of those kids out of football bring a lot more pressure on the defensive side of the court.”

Elizabethton 52

Pless 15, Bowers 14, Robinson 11, Cornett 7, Nichols 3, Greene 2

Sullivan South 55

Headrick 12, Booker 11, Young 10, Blair 7, Harmon 6, Bowery 5, Comas 4,

Elizabethton 23 10 10 9 — 52

Sullivan South 13 17 6 19 — 55

3-point goals— Elizabethton 5 ( Pless 2, Robinson 2, Cornett 1) South 2 (Young, Booker)