The Raiders (6-16, 3-8) hit on all cylinders on Friday night in Lynchburg to earn a 58-47 win against the Community Viking (17-4, 10-1) in a game that was according to one Raider fan, “a lot of fun to watch.”
Prior to the game, Community ranked first in District 9A play with a single district loss to Forrest (76-70) while the Raiders sat next to last.
The Vikings got on the board first off a couple of free throws. Four plays later senior Zach Williams connected on a jumper to tie the game 2-2.
A Community basket bounced in-and-out and the Raiders drove down floor where Ben Harvey swished two to earn the lead.
Community answered with a long tres to regain the lead 5-4 at the five minute mark. On the very next play, Harvey swished another jump shot to pull the Raiders ahead 6-5.
The two teams traded turnovers –including three walking calls between them — before Dillon Davis fed the ball inside to Dalton Barrier to earn a three point lead.
Community answered and then with just 12 seconds remaining, Davis threw up a quick jump shot to make it 10-7 at the end of the first period.
In the second, Williams drained a long three point shot (one of three he made in the second period) to pull ahead 13-7.
For the next two minutes, the Raiders and Vikings traded baskets. Then a Raider turn over in the paint gave Community the ball back and a guard dribbled inside for the layup and the lead, 16-15.
With that Raider Head Coach Lavon King made good use of a timeout.
Back on the court, the Raiders fouled a Viking on his way up for a shot. He made one of two from the charity stripe to make it 17-15.
At the midway point of the second period, Williams hit another three to tie the game.
The Raider D stiffened up while baskets began to fall Moore County’s way. Points from Harvey, Williams and Robinson pulled the Raiders ahead by 13 points at the half. MCHS held the Vikings to a single basket in the final four minutes of the second period.
The Raiders continued to hold the lead through the third period and led 44-30 going into the final stanza.
At the five minute mark, a Viking guard swished a three-point shot to make it 46-36. On the next play, the Raiders turned the ball over on a blocked shot and Community drove down to add two more.
The Raiders then turned the ball over again — this time on a bad pass and Community capitalized with another perimeter shot to bring them within five. With less that four minutes remaining, the Raiders held a 48-43 lead.
Foul trouble down the stretch determined the ultimate outcome. Clearly frustrated, the Vikings began reaching in and swatting at balls. The Raiders made 14 of 20 from the charity stripe in the final eight minutes and failed to make points from the floor.
As everyone in Raider Arena sat on the edge of their seat, time expired and the Raiders headed to the locker room victorious.
Williams (19) and Harvey (15) combined for 34 points. Other contributing Raiders were Dalton Barrier (9), Dillon Davis (8), JP Robinson (6) and Cole Boyce (1).