2018-02-09 / Sports

Falcons beat Devils in Triple OT

By Tim Gochnaur

A.C. Flora’s DJ Sinkler shoots over Dreher’s TJ Brown and Trent Clarke. 
Photo by James Witherspoon A.C. Flora’s DJ Sinkler shoots over Dreher’s TJ Brown and Trent Clarke. Photo by James Witherspoon A. C. Flora’s junior guard DJ Sinkler had a game- high 33 points— including a game-saving three in the second overtime period—to lead the Falcons to a 92-81 triple overtime win over the Dreher Blue Devils in a Region V-4A boys’ basketball classic on Tuesday night, February 6, at A.C. Flora.

The victory clinches the region title for the Falcons with a 16-6 overall record and 7-1 in region play and gives the Falcons the No. 1 seed from the region and a first-round home playoff game when the brackets get filled this weekend.

Dreher finishes with a 9-13 record overall and 3- 5 in the region and awaits playoff positioning as the No. 4 seed from the region.

RJ Mobley added 16 points for the Falcons, Zack Foulks had 13 points, and sophomore center Patrick Iriel added 11. Dreher’s Simon Grant led the visitors with 28 points, Trevon Dreher had 13 points, Trent Clarke had 12 points, and Jordan King followed with 11.

Dreher took a 30-26 lead to halftime, as rivalry intensity took hold early giving no indication of the drama to come. Seven Falcons chipped in on the third quarter scoring, Dreher got help from only three players, and the Falcons opened up a 47-40 lead heading to the fourth quarter.

Flora came out in a baseline-to-baseline pressing defense in the second half that, for a while, looked like it might work.

“You can’t take anything away from them,” Flora head coach Josh Staley said of the Devils. “They just kept scrapping. They just kept making plays, and they took advantage of the mistakes we made.”

Flora led by 61- 54 with just over two minutes to go, but a 9-2 closing rush by the Devils sent the game to the first OT. Jordan

King got a stick-back, and Simon Grant got two free throws and a jumper to pull Dreher within one. Flora’s Sinkler scored on a drive for a 63-60 lead, but Dreher’s AJ Myers drained a rainbow from beyond the arc as time expired.

Flora held a 71-65 lead in the first four-minute overtime with just under two minutes to play. King got a stickback, CJ Rojas made one-of-two from the line, and Grant nailed a drive to pull the Devils to the short end of a 71-69 score.

Sinkler got a free throw for the Falcons for a three-point lead. Dreher sophomore James Beck drilled a three from the corner (his only score of the game) to go to the second overtime tied at 72-72.

Dreher’s Grant got two free throws with just over two minutes to go in the second overtime to give the Devils a 75- 74 lead. With just under a minute left, King threw up a prayer as he was falling backwards in the lane to put the Devils up 77-74.

Flora set up the next play after a time out, and Sinkler splashed a three from beyond the key to tie the game with 39 seconds to go. Neither team could score in the time left.

A 15-4 burst by Flora in the third overtime broke the game open. Flora jumped out with a layup by Mobley, a stickback by Finney, and a three from Foulks, and never looked back. Dreher could only get a field goal from Grant and Dreher in the period.

A.C. Flora: Derrick Sinkler 33, RJ Mobley 16, Zack Foulks 13, Patrick Iriel 11, Daniel Finney 8, Diamante Brown 4, Quincy Riley 4, and Nasir Boyce 3.

Dreher: Simon Grant 28, Trevon Dreher 13, Trent Clarke 12, Jordan King 11, AJ Myers 8, Allen Elmore 4, and James Beck 3.

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