LYNCHBURG, Tenn. — Andrew Copeland’s buzzer beater from 20 feet away broke a 24-all deadlock and lifted the Moore County Raiders middle school basketball team to a 27-24 victory over visiting Cascade on Monday night.
With 1.1 seconds remaining in the contest, Moore County ran an inbounds play to Copeland, who curled off a double screen and slid back beyond the 3-point, where he caught a pass from Brayden Cashion and calmly sank the game-winner.
As the Raiders ran their record to 4-0, Monday’s nightcap marked the second furious finish in as many games for the MCMS boys, who survived a last-second, half-court heave from Forrest last week to claim a one-point victory.
Also last week, Moore County rolled to a convincing 46-21 win over Fayetteville City.
None were as dramatic as Monday, however, as Copeland’s basket put the finishing touches on a nail-biter that see-sawed back and forth in the game’s waning minutes.
Copeland, who finished with a game-high 10 points, was relatively quiet in the second and third periods. He had a 3-pointer and two free throws in both the first period and fourth period.
After leading 6-0 in the first period and 10-7 at intermission, Moore County needed free throws from Cashion in the fourth period just to tie the game. The Raiders were 5-of-9 from the charity stripe over the final 6 minutes and needed every shot they could muster after the visitors hit a pair of 3-pointers and a free throw to take their first lead of the game with less than 90 seconds to play.
Moore County had the ball with a chance to win with 15 seconds left but a turnover near midcourt kept Cascade’s hopes alive.
With the game tied, a scramble for the ball left the Raiders with possession under their own basket. Head coach Heath Fanning called timeout with 1.1 left to set up the final play.
Following Copeland’s 10 points, Cashion had six and Jason Fanning scored five. Will Harder, Dylan Scruggs and Noah Blankenship finished with two points each.
MCMS 27, Forrest 26
After jumping out to an 11-0 lead in the first period, the Raiders survived a last-second scare on the road in Chapel Hill on Thursday, Oct. 20.
Forrest stole a Moore County inbounds pass with 2.1 seconds left and raced the other way, heaving the ball toward the basket as time expired. The shot was off the mark and the Raiders collected their third win of the season.
Brayden Cashion scored nine points to pace Moore County. Riley Holman added seven and Jason Fanning had five. Andrew Copeland, Will Harder and Noah Blankenship chipped in two apiece.
MCMS 46, Fayetteville 21
In Lynchburg, the host Raiders sank four straight 3-pointers to start the game. After leading 17-6 at the half, Moore County pulled away in the second half, thanks in part to an 18-point scoring outburst in the fourth period.
Brayden Cashion and Noah Blankenship led the Raiders with 10 points each. Dylan Scruggs added nine and Andrew Copeland netted six. Jason Fanning and Riley Holman tallied four points each, while Kevin Myers had two and Colton Bateman one.