FORT SMITH -- With the second half of the 7A-Central Conference underway, Fort Smith Southside has begun to make a push toward its first postseason berth since 2012.
The Mavericks scored 21 points in the fourth quarter, including an 11-4 spurt in the final four minutes, to rally past Conway 59-52 in boys' action Friday night at Southside Gym.
Conway 11 15 17 9 -- 52
FS Southside 17 9 12 21 -- 59
Conway (13-8, 4-4): Milton 20, Bradshaw 15, Lowe 9, Thompson 5, Kaiser 2, Clardy 1.
FS Southside (11-11, 3-5): Moore 16, Hamilton 13, Gatewood 10, Coleman 7, Jackson 6, Brewer 4, Solomon 3.
Southside (11-11, 3-5) trailed 43-38 going into the final period, but a 7-point spurt in a 90 second span turned a tie game into a 55-48 lead with 1:37 left.
"During timeouts, we told the kids to hang in there and keep plugging," Mavericks coach Charles Cooper said. "I thought everyone that played tonight contributed in some form or fashion. Whether it was guys hitting threes, guys penetrating and getting the ball to Dylan (Hamilton) down low or making a big defensive stop. It was a total group effort."
With the game tied at 48-all, Hamilton scored in the lane for a 50-48 lead with 3:03 left. After a defensive stop, Ike Moore drained a 3-pointer with 1:58 left, then after a Conway miss, Moore drove into the lane for a basket at 1:37 for the cushion Southside would need to hang on and win.
"Moore's layup was a big basket for us," Cooper said. "It got the lead to seven points and I felt then that we would finish this one."
Conway had taken a 43-38 lead when Blake Bradshaw put back a miss at the buzzer to end the third quarter. The Wampus Cats, though, only made three field goals in the final period.
"Down the stretch, we had great looks inside and we could not finish for whatever reason," Conway Coach Brian Longing said. "We just could not get enough stops in the fourth quarter on defense. We were having to match them possession for possession and when we stopped, they took the lead and never looked back."
Moore scored 16 to pace Southside while Hamilton scored 16, including seven in the fourth quarter, while Taye Gatewood added 10. Kylen Milton scored a game-high 20 points for Conway.
CONWAY 75, FS SOUTHSIDE 40
Conway wanted to take out its frustrations after Tuesday's loss at Fort Smith Northside.
Unfortunately for Fort Smith Southside, the Mavericks were next on the Lady Wampus Cats' schedule.
Conway 22 24 17 12 -- 75
FS Southside 9 9 14 8 -- 40
Conway (20-2, 7-1): Smith 16, Yelder 13, Pickens 10, Roetzel 9, Nolen 8, Netherlain 5, Chatman 5, Reed 3, Wiseman 2, Rector 2, Summerville 2.
FS Southside (3-15, 2-6): Rice 18, Carson 7, Kleck 7, Smith 3, Graham 3, Jones 2.
Making their second trip to Fort Smith in a week, Conway dominated Southside from the start en route to an easy 7A-Central girls victory.
The Lady Wampus Cats (20-2, 7-1) stayed in a 3-way tie atop the 7A-Central Standings with Northside and North Little Rock. It was Northside's 49-47 win over the Lady Wampus Cats that forced the tie. Conway host North Little Rock on Tuesday.
"After going 6-0 in this conference, it is easy to forget the little things," Conway coach Ashley Nance said. "We got outrebounded against Northside and the lack of effort going after rebounds.
"Tonight, I thought we played really good defense and rebounded the ball. We have to do that again on Tuesday."
Southside (3-15, 2-6) did lead early on a couple of Melanie Rice inside baskets to take a 5-3 lead two minutes into the game. Conway then went on a 15-0 run in to open up an 18-7 lead.
Though the Mavericks did get some easy baskets against the Conway 1-3-1 zone, the Wampus Cats did force 20 turnovers in the first three quarters in building a 63-32 advantage.
Conway had three players in double figures -- Asiyha Smith led with 16, Myia Yelder had 13 and Jadah Pickens added 10. Rice scored a game-high 18 points to lead Southside, which hosts Cabot on Tuesday.
Preps Basketball on 02/03/2018
Print Headline: Basketball: FS Southside making push for playoffs