The final two seconds of the boys game between Brunswick and Richmond Hill made for as bizarre an ending as you’ll see on a basketball court.
The Pirates were able to come out atop the madness to survive a ferocious late charge and down the Wildcats 48-47 on Tuesday at Brunswick Square Garden.
Richmond Hill trailed by 11 entering the fourth quarter, but it managed to tie the game on a pair of free throws with 40 seconds remaining. After Brunswick briefly went back on top on a couple of Sheydan Baggs free throws, the visitors knotted the score again on a putback with just two seconds on the clock.
In an attempt to quickly get the ball down the court for a shot, the Pirates immediately turned the ball over to give possession back to the Wildcats on their end of the court. While defending the ensuing inbounds play, a technical foul was called on Brunswick, giving Richmond Hill two free throws and possession.
The Wildcats missed both free throws, and threw the ball out of bounds on the side out, giving the Pirates one last shot, and they made it count.
Brunswick inbounded the ball to Torrey Dickens, who was fouled as he turned up court, giving him two shots at the victory. Dickens sank the first shot and intentionally missed the second to help his team secure the win.
“That’s got to be the craziest game I’ve ever coached in,” Turner said. “We feel very fortunate to come away with that win.
“When they called that technical foul there at the end, I didn’t think we had a shot. Credit our guys, they didn’t quit. They just kept battling.”
Brunswick (10-6, 3-0 Region 2-6A) used a 14-1 run to close out the second quarter to turn a four-point deficit into a nine-point advantage at halftime, and it looked as if it’d run away with the game when they went up 37-20 on Baggs’ basket midway through the third.
But Richmond Hill (10-8, 2-1) refused to go away quietly, and despite entering the fourth down 40-29, it continued to chip away throughout the fourth as BHS went cold from the field.
“We were up there and we got to where we stopped attacking,” Turner said. “We sort of played defensive. Even though we were trying to run the clock, we still wanted to keep running an offense and keep attack the rim, and we turned it over and that let them get back into the game…
“We’re hopeful we can learn from that. We’ve obviously got to get a lot better with our turnover to assist ratio or we’re going to struggle to win big games.”
A drastic free throw disparity also helped the Wildcats trim points off the deficit as they got into the bonus and wound up shooting 16 free throws in the final period to just five for the Pirates.
Over the balance of the game, Richmond Hill shot from the charity stripe 28 times compared to 10 by Brunswick.
“I hate to say it, but there were some one-sided calls,” Turner said. “It was really disappointing officiating to me.”
Joyful Hawkins finished with a team-high 14 points, and Baggs added 12 in the win.
Brunswick girls 40
Richmond Hill 35
Brunswick head girls coach Maria Mangram expected her team to bounce back from a tough spell as it dove into region play and it did just that Tuesday against Richmond Hill.
The Pirates stifled the Wildcats over an 11-and-a-half-minute stretch as they built a 12-point lead and hung on to score a 40-35 upset at Brunswick Square Garden.
Richmond Hill (15-3, 1-1 Region 2-6A) entered the contest on a five-game winning streak, but it never led after briefly going up two late in the first quarter against Brunswick (7-8, 2-1), which had lost five of its last eight.
“We needed that win bad,” Mangram said. “Also, hate to see a pattern, but it seems like we win, then we lose, then we win, then we lose.
“But our goal is to finish out the region strong. We still have opportunities to do that because we get to play everybody else again. The goal is to take care of every region team, and because we fell short against Glynn, we have to win out to finish first.”
Brunswick scores seven straight after Richmond Hill’s opening basket, and after falling behind 9-7, the Pirates embarked on an 18-4 run to close the first half.
The Wildcats clawed back into the contest, beginning with their first basket of the second half on a layup with four and a half minutes remaining in the third, and they drew to within two points at 34-32 on a corner 3 with 3:18 to play.
But Brunswick shook its third-quarter funk loose and made enough plays down the stretch to earn a big win against a region rival.
“We’re trying to play four complete quarters and we’ve yet to do that,” Mangram said. “Tonight we only scored five points in the third quarter, and you’re not going to beat good teams like that.”
Keya Daniels led the Pirate girls with 11 points, and Makaila Brown chipped in eight more.
Brunswick JV girls 33
Richmond Hill 31
Shakardia Cowart had 11 points and seven steals in the win.
Richmond Hill 38
BHS JV boys 30
Tyrease Jones and Jonathan Ellis each had six points in the loss.