Jeremy D. Wells
Carter County Times
The West Carter Comets came back in overtime to overcome the Robertson County Black Devils last Wednesday, after ending the first half five points down and coming back in the second half to tie things up.
It was a tight, back and forth game, with both teams up by as many as six points, at times, before the other side would pull that lead back.
West Carter scored first, with Landon Nichols making a basket that was quickly followed by a Robertson County field goal, setting the pattern for the night.
Gage Leadingham would score next for West Carter – a three pointer – taking the score to 5-2 before a pair of free throws from Robertson’s Justin Becker brought the Black Devils back within a point.
Trevor Callahan took the lead to four points with another three-pointer, for a score of 8-4. But a field goal from the Black Devils and a three-pointer from the team’s Sebastian Dixon turned that Comets’ lead around, for a score of 8-9.
A series of free throws from Tyson Webb, and another three-pointer from Callahan, took the Comets to 14-9 with just around three minutes left in the first quarter. A Robertson County field goal tried to whittle away at the lead, but a three-pointer from Webb took the West lead to six points, 17-11.
It wouldn’t last, though. Another pair of Becker free throws gave the Black Devils two more points, and a three-pointer from Dixon brought Robertson County within a point of the Comets one more.
Leadingham increased the spread to three for the Comets on a field goal, 19-16, but Braden Dice brought Robertson County to 18 and Dixon took the score to 19-21 on a three-pointer.
Callahan took the lead back at the end of the quarter, making it 22-21 for the Comets, on a three-pointer, but Dixon followed up Callahan’s three pointer with a trio of free throws, ending the quarter 22-24.
Logan Berry scored first in the second quarter, on a free throw. Becker scored first for Robertson, taking the score to 23-26, and the back and forth continued. Callahan scored a field goal for the Comets and Eli Dotson a three-pointer for the Black Devils. But then Callahan scored again, and again for West Carter, tying the score at 29, until a Becker field goal gave Robertson County the lead again at 29-31. Sam Jones would tie it up again for the Comets, but there was no coming back from there until the end of the half. Dice scored another field goal for the Black Devils, to make the score 31-33, and after a basket by Dotson and a pair of Decker free throws Robertson County was up by six. Hunter Sammons did hit a three pointer at the end of the half, taking the score to 34-37 as the Comets ended the half down over a tough-playing Robertson County team. But a pair of post-buzzer foul shots from Joshua Pilosky gave the Black Devils another two points going into the second half, 34-39.
In the second half, though, the West Carter team came back hard, flipping the formula to tie things up and take the game into overtime. West Carter scored 11 points in the third quarter, to Robertson County’s 8. In the fourth quarter the Comets got 14 points and the Black Devils 12, bringing the final score to 59-59 and triggering overtime play.
The Comets third quarter run started with a Leadingham free throw followed by a Webb field goal. But a basket from Dice interrupted the West comeback, taking the score to 37-41. Dixon took the lead to six points again, with a two-pointer, but Nichols cut that to four and a score of 39-43. Another Nichols shot took the Comets within a basket of a tie, 41-43. A Dice basket followed by a Leadingham bucket kept the spread at two, 43-45, before another Leadingham shot took it to 45 all with about a minute and a half of play left. Becker scored the final shot of the quarter for Robertson, taking them to 47, but West Carter wasn’t finished yet.
Tyson Webb tied things up again early, with a goal about 15 seconds into the fourth quarter. Another Dixon three pointer cut that lead again, 50-47. Another Robertson County basket, from Horn, set the score 47-52 and a free throw following a Callahan foul on that shot took the Black Devils’ lead back to six, 47-53.
Webb narrowed that again, though, with a basket at around the 5:30 mark. A minute later Sammons added to the West count, taking the score within a basket again, at 51-53, and a Sammons free throw took it within a point, 52-53, on a foul from Tanner Horn. West then started moving quick for a comeback, with a Leadingham steal and basket giving West Carter the lead again, 54-53 – their first lead of the second half.
It was all downhill from there.
The game would go back and forth, with Nichols adding another two points for West Carter, Becker adding two more on free throws for Robertson and, seconds later, a drive and pass from Leadingham to Callahan for the layup put the West lead back to three, 58-55. Nichols earned a pair of free throws and took the score to 59-55, but his second shot bounced out. If it hadn’t, Robertson might not have been able to come back. But instead a basket by Dice took the Black Devils within two. Then a carry called on Leadingham, which West coach Jeremy Webb contested, gave possession back to Robertson with a minute left in regular play. The Devils didn’t waste it, and despite losing the ball twice again to West Carter, and a Comets time-out with 52 seconds left, came back on free throws after a foul by the Comets’ Callahan. After that it was just a matter of running out the clock.
West had missed opportunities to win on free throws too, first on a missed foul shot by Leadingham, and then on a penalty shot for Webb. But they didn’t squander their opportunities in overtime play, ending it in the first period of OT by scoring 12 points to the Black Devils’ 4, to win 71-63.
Becker scored first for Robertson on a free throw, with West Carter’s Webb flipping the lead and adding to it with a free throw, putting the score 62-60. Webb took the lead to four on a rebound from a Leadingham shot that bounced out. Becker then scored again for the Black Devils, on a rebound from a missed Dixon three-point attempt, putting West Carter’s lead within a basket once more. Webb wasn’t having it though, getting nothing but net on a perfectly arched long three pointer to put West Carter ahead by five, 67-62. A Robertson free-throw took the score to 67-63, and West took a time out after a foul on the Comets from the Black Devils’ Decker. Nichols increased the lead to six, 69-63, on a field goal and then took it to 70 on a free throw. Callahan scored the Comets’ final basket on a free throw, taking the score to 71-63 with 19 seconds left on the clock. With 11 seconds left in overtime West Carter took possession and Robertson didn’t even make them run out the clock, letting the game go and giving up to West’s eight-point lead.
West also won their next two games, against Morgan County, the first a 73-44 blowout on Friday and a follow-up win on Saturday night 49-46, with a three-pointer at the buzzer from Logan Berry saving the Comets from another overtime situation.
The next game in the All A Classic Sectional is scheduled on March 2, against St. Henry, at 5:30 that evening.
Contact the writer at firstname.lastname@example.org