No. 7 Warriors upset No. 2 Sullivan East

Published 10:32 pm Wednesday, February 14, 2018

It was a close one all the way down to the last second as the No. 7 Happy Valley Warriors faced No. 2 Sullivan East during the TSSAA District 1-AA Tournament at John Treadway Gym Wednesday.
The Warriors kept their composure down the fourth quarter stretch to fend off East, 50-49, advancing to the semifinals and eliminating the Patriots.
It was the Warriors first win over East since the Patriots entered the Three Rivers Conference and Happy Valley head coach Chuck Babb’s first victory against Sullivan East coach John Dyer.
“It is a big program win,” said Babb. “We have been talking all year, and we can beat anybody in our league. They have to trust us (coaches), and we have to trust them, and we did that tonight.
“…Big credit to our kids,” said Babb. “They played great defense, and I thought our offense executed pretty well.
Happy Valley senior Jacob Surcey led the Warriors with a game-high 22 points.
“It was the best game of his career,” said Babb. “He handled the ball well for us. He got assists early.”
After three quarters, the Warriors held a tiny 35-34 lead over Sullivan East. Surcey connected on five straight points to give the Warriors a 47-42 lead with less than three minutes left to play. After a lengthy injury timeout, the Patriots came back on the court and saw East’s Adam Davison rattle off five points to tighten the game up 47-46 with just a minute to play. Davison struck again with 7.2 seconds getting the Patriots within one point, 50-49. After missed foul shots from Happy Valley, East had one last chance with just 3.2 seconds on the clock, but the Patriots’ final shot fell short.
In the first, the Patriots jumped out 8-2 early, before Happy Valley’s Surcey scored back-to-back 3-pointers to tie things up at 8-8 with 3:30 left in the quarter. East’s Bryson Burgess laid one in before Warriors Luke Roberts had a 3-point play to move Happy Valley up 11-10. A late jumper from East’s Adam Davison gave the Patriots a small 12-11 edge heading into the second quarter.
The Warriors came alive at the top of the second as they rallied 10-3 to take a 21-15 lead. Happy Valley’s Bryce Carter provided eight points to the run. The Patriots fought to climb within one point of East 21-20 before Surcey hit a 3-pointer to make it 24-20 before Davison hit another late shot to cut HV’s lead to 24-22 heading into the half.
Happy Valley’s Carter finished the night with 15 points while teammates Brayden Sams and Luke Roberts had seven and six points, respectively.
For East, Davison finished the night with 17 points.
Happy Valley will take on the winner of Johnson County and Sullivan Central on Saturday at 5 p.m.
Wednesday’s win also earned the Warriors a TSSAA Region 1-AA tournament berth.

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