HURRICANE - Lakin Tucker helped seal a conference title for the Ravenswood Middle School boys basketball team with a clutch free throw with only three ticks on the clock and the red and black celebrated a 57-53 triumph for their first MVAC title in 15 years.
The win marks the second MVAC title in as many years for Jackson County as Ripley Middle School defeated Logan last season for the crown.
The Demons, who only suffered three losses in their 2013-14 campaign, were considered underdogs in the match-up as Hurricane had defeated them twice in the regular season.
The opening quarter began with the Redskins taking a six-point lead. RvMS came roaring back with timely buckets and good shot selection to tie the score at 14 each going into the second period. Isaiah Morgan launched a 3-point bomb in the second quarter that found nothing but nylon and silenced the Redskin crowd while firing up the Demon hoopsters.
Hurricane led 28-26 at the half and both teams notched 15 points each in the third period as the score stood at 43-41, going into the fourth period.
The Demons tickled the twine to the tune of 16 points in the fourth and played lockdown man-to-man defense on the Redskins while pressing in precise junctures of the contest to force late turnovers.
“These guys played a tremendous game,” said Assistant Coach Andy Wise. “We knew coming in how tough of a game and environment this would be. Hurricane has great size and athleticism to match up with us. Isaiah helped lead us once again, a great team leader. Jayden played possibly his best game at point guard for us to keep control of the game. Stephen was a little banged up, but played tremendous under the basket. Lakin played his game and did everything we expect of him, his freethrow was huge! Blake played a great defensive game, and came up with a big steal at a critical point of the game. Alex possibly played the best game of his career as his aggression and ability to finish led us to the win. The rest of the guys on the team have had a great season and I look for big things out of all of them on the high school level.”
Head Coach Bryan Schirmer was elated that the team could celebrate on the long ride home.
“I am so proud of this group; to win this conference is special. We are the only AA school in the league. It has been 15 years since we last won the conference championship. This game ranks up there at the top of my list of all the games I have coached in. This group of young men has shown the dedication it takes to win. Most of them play year round, and the results have been fantastic. I look forward to their continued success in high school.”
RAVENSWOOD SCORING: Isaiah Morgan led all scorers with 20 points and three rebounds, Alex Easthom had 18 points and seven rebounds, Stephen Dawson had 10 points and two rebounds, Jayden Rhodes had eight points and six boards and Lakin Tucker netted one point and five rebounds.
PHIL’S NOTEBOOK - It is worthy of noting that Blake Bennett, Jared Ball, Jalen Wayt, Chase Swain, Josh Ritchie and Evan Dunlap all contributed to Ravenswood Middle’s championship season.