By Nathan Hutchinson
Register Staff Report
The Madison Southern Eagles picked up their second win of the season Tuesday in heart-stopping fashion.
The Eagles built a six-point lead over visiting Estill County with just over three minutes to go, but the Engineers stormed back to tie the game at 51-51 with just less than a minute remaining.
Southern held the ball for one last shot. Tanner Kidwell hit Trevor Huff cutting down the lane and he was fouled with 5.4 seconds.
Huff calmly sank both free throws to put the Eagles on top, then Estill County missed a short shot at the buzzer, giving the Eagles a 53-51 win.
“It was a big win for us. That is a very good team over there. Those kids have played together for two or three years. They’re big and strong inside. It was a huge win,” Southern coach Shane Buttry said.
The Eagles got big efforts from a lot of players and it seemed like every time things began to slip away, someone came up with a big rebound, steal or loose ball to get the team back under control.
“Anybody who played, whether it was 30 seconds or three quarters helped us out tonight,” Buttry said. “Every possession matters and we got some big plays every time we needed one tonight from a lot of people.”
Stacy Burns led the way for Southern with a team-high 16 points, while Kidwell also hit double figures with 13.
Huff added nine points, Michael Jefferson had four, Andrew Miller had three and Devante Linville had two points.
Southern is back in action on Thursday against Harlan County in the Berea Holiday Classic.
Model 63, McCreary Central 55
The Patriots picked up a big win on the road Tuesday, 63-55, over McCreary Central.
Model had to overcome some early foul trouble as starters Ephraim Otieno and Jared Adams both picked up two fouls inside the game’s first two minutes.
But thanks to some stellar play by seniors Levi Agee and Caleb Kincaid off the bench, the Patriots took a 17-16 advantage at the end of the first quarter.
Model led 30-27 at the half, but the Raiders erased the lead and tied it at 41-41 after three quarters.
After struggling mightily from behind the three point line (7-of-15) in the first half, the Patriots turned to big men in the fourth quarter and they responded in a big way.
Zack Rice-Gordon, Alex Chen and Kincaid controlled the paint and the Patriots pushed out to a lead mid-way through the fourth quarter and held on for the win.
Rice-Gordon finished with a game-high 16 points, 11 of which came in the fourth quarter, and also hit 7-of-8 free throws down the stretch.
Chen had a career-high 15 points and six rebounds.
“They packed the zone in on us and we shot 4-of-15 from three in the first half, so I told the guys no more threes, get the ball inside,” Model coach Wes Scarberry said. “They were finally patient enough that we got what we wanted and those three guys really got the job done.”
Scarberry also praised the job Kincaid and Agee did coming in and calming the team down in the first quarter.
“Caleb and Levin as seniors have really accepted their roles coming off the bench. They both played really well, especially in that first quarter and helped get control of the game. That’s what makes a good team, having guys do that.”
Model is back in action on Friday against Jackson County in the Berea Holiday Classic.