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Basketball: Blackburn, Bentonville West boys hold off Rogers High

by Henry Apple | January 25, 2017 at 1:00 a.m.

CENTERTON -- Bentonville West's boys almost shut off the offense too soon, but Collin Blackburn took over just in time.

The junior forward hit seven of eight free throws over the final 65 seconds as the Wolverines pulled away at the end and claimed a 56-46 7A-West Conference victory at home over Rogers High.


Rogers High 60, Bentonville West 27



Rogers (12-7, 4-2): Loyd 16, Randels 15, Richmond 12, Sandor 8, Hale 3, Williams 2, Sherril 2, Figenskau 2.

West (3-15, 1-5): Reid 8, Wacaser 5, Montgomery 4, Wilson 3, Mahone 3, Wood 2, Henry 2.


Bentonville West 56, Rogers High 46



Rogers (7-12, 0-6): Dake 12, Casey 10, Jones 9, Benninghoff 6, Greear 5, Roberson 4.

West (10-9, 3-3): Collin Blackburn 15, Hornsby 15, Muldrew 11, Rutherford 8, Collier Blackburn 4, Barron 3.

"Early in the year, we would have folded right there," West coach Greg White said. "That shows the maturity we're trying to build."

"This is a tough league. I told a buddy of mine I sometimes miss those times you can look on a schedule and point to a win. There's no easy wins in this league. You have to earn everything every single night, and it takes years off your life, I know that."

West (10-9, 3-3) tried to slow things down after a Gabe Hornsby bucket gave the Wolverines a 47-38 lead with 5:42 remaining, but it only allowed Rogers (7-12, 0-6) to close the gap to 47-43 before Blackburn hit his two free throws with 1:05 remaining. Jake Benninghoff then followed with a 3-pointer and made it a 49-46 game with 46 seconds left.

The Mounties, however, never scored again. Blackburn then hit five more free throws, and West closed out its scoring with a buzzer-beating layup by Levi Rutherford to give the Wolverines a 10-point win -- the maximum margin of victory a team can have when tie-breakers are being used for postseason play.

"A lot of that was we were trying to get into something -- not really to put the game on ice, but to give ourselves free throws or layups," White said. "Rogers did a good job on defense, then got a big shot and closed the gap."

Both teams stayed on even terms through the first half until the final 3 minutes of the third quarter, when West put together a 10-2 run after A-Ron Jones' bucket gave Rogers a 30-29 lead. Boston Barron's bucket inside put the Wolverines ahead to stay, then Gabe Hornsby had a steal and dunk before Cobe Muldrew finished it with five straight points, including a jumper in traffic before the buzzer sounded to give West a 39-32 lead.

Hornsby, who scored 14 of his 15 points in the second half, started the fourth quarter with a 3-pointer, then added another to give the Wolverines their biggest lead, 45-34, with 7:01 remaining.

"That seems to be the thing that has plagued us all year," Rogers coach Wayne Herren said. "Gabe made a couple of big shots outside, and we knew the key to this game was rebounds. We gave up way too many offensive rebounds and second chances.

"We had costly turnovers, which is characteristic of a young team. There's no way getting around it; this one hurts."

Blackburn also had 15 points and Muldrew added 11 for West. Garrett Dake had 12 and Tony Casey 10 to pace Rogers.


Rogers High 60, Bentonville West 27

Rogers closed out the first quarter with a 17-0 run, capped by a 3-pointer by Madison Loyd, as the Lady Mounties rolled to their second straight victory.

Loyd scored 14 of her game-high 16 points in the first half, while Elise Randels added 15 and Kelsey Richmond 12 for Rogers (12-7, 4-2). Kayanne Reid had eight points for West (3-15, 1-5).

Sports on 01/25/2017

Print Headline: Blackburn, West boys hold off Rogers


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