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Eighth-graders hang on to beat Shorecrest
ARLINGTON A determined group of boys basketball players from Arlingtons eighth-grade Wesco Youth League team took down the Shorecrest Scots 54-51 on Saturday Feb. 9. The game at Haller Middle School stayed competitive the whole way, with Arlington making some key plays down the stretch to win.
In the first quarter Conner Davis gave Arlington the early lead with a flurry of offense. He took a pass from Bo Brummel and layed the ball in to give Arlington a 5-2 edge. On the next Shorecrest possession, Davis stole an entry pass and Arlington raced the other way. Davis then nabbed an offensive rebound and putback for the Eagles.
Blake McPherson got involved as well for the home team, threading a pass between defenders to Adam Rahl for an easy lay up. Brummel completed the first-quarter scoring with some hard work on the offensive glass. He banged through several Shorecrest defenders on his way to the basket to give Arlington a 12-8 lead at the end of the quarter.
In the second quarter the point guard McPherson took over for the Eagles. He lobbed a well-placed entry pass in toward Max Bryson who converted inside the paint. McPherson then found Davis spotting up for an open jump shot. On the following possession McPherson took his man off the dribble, got all the way to the rim and converted a nifty reverse lay up to put Arlington ahead 18-13. Then McPherson found Davis spotting up again on the fast break, good for two more points. Shorecrest took a timeout to regroup and catch their breath as it was obvious that the Arlington speed was bothering them.
After another McPherson score on a turn around jumper the Eagles looked to be headed for a rout. They led by as many as 10 points in the quarter, culminating with a Brummel move in the post to make it 27-17 at the half.
In the third quarter Shorecrest made their run. They used a trapping zone defense to frustrate the Arlington attack, and the Scots converted a number of fast break opportunities to drag themselves back into the game. Conner Davis knocked down back-to-back 3-pointers or the period could have ended much worse for the Eagles. At the end of three quarters, Arlington was clinging to a slim 39-35 lead.
To start the fourth quarter, McPherson stole a Shorecrest outlet pass and tallied a quick two points for Arlington. He then took a pass from Davis and scored again on a fast break to give the Eagles a 44-41 lead. Brummel scored on a baseline drive, using the basket to shield the ball as he finished on the weak side. Brummel then caught a bullet pass from McPherson under the hoop and laid the ball up softly for a 48-41 lead.
The Eagles got two big buckets down the stretch from Davis, including a soft eight-foot jumper to put them ahead 54-45 with two minutes to play. But Shorecrest kept battling and after getting a steal with 20 seconds remaining, had several chances to tie the game with a 3-pointer. Fortunately for Arlington the Scots could not find the range on their last second shots, allowing the Eagles to escape with a three-point win, 54-51.