BERRYVILLE — The 4A-1 race is full of twist and turns.
Tuesday night at Berryville’s Bobcat Arena it was an up and a down for the two teams involved.
For Harrison, it was the first conference loss of the season, for Berryville it was the first league win of the year. Berryville defeated Harrison, 71-68.
Berryville is now 1-1 in conference play and 13-4 overall. Harrison is 2-1 in league action and 9-10 overall.
The Bobcats had a chance to put the game away, but free throws were a source of trouble.
With a 65-63 lead, Berryville shot six free throws from the 1:55 mark of the fourth period to 34.1 showing on the clock. Kade Davidson hit one and Chris Lehr connected on one. Lehr’s shot made the contest a two-possession affair with 34.1 left.
It didn’t take long for Harrison’s Ethan Edwards to score to make it a two-point contest, but Davidson was able to run away from the Harrison defense for 12 seconds before finally being fouled.
The sophomore guard connected on both free throws to give the Bobcats a 69-65 bulge.
Gabe Huskey of Harrison sank a trey with 7.3 seconds left to pull Harrison within a single point.
Berryville got the basketball inbounds to Scotland Lucas. The senior calmly sank both free throws to push the Berryville lead to three points.
Inbounding the basketball to Edwards, Harrison pushed the ball up the sideline. Berryville fouled him before he could launch a shot. This move prevented him from being able to score a 3-pointer and tie the contest.
Berryville was able to seal the game with the three-point win.
Bryce Bonds started the night with a trey for the Goblins. Berryville’s J.D. Smith answered that with a triple for the Bobcats.
At the 6:38 mark of the first period, Huskey had a steal and hit a layup. It was Harrison’s last lead of the night at 5-3.
Smith tied the game for the Bobcats and started a 6-0 run that saw Weston Teague score after taking a pass from Davidson and then Davidson scoring to give the Bobcats a 9-5 lead.
Harrison tied the contest late in the first period with a Logan Plumlee 3-pointer, but Lucas ended the period’s scoring with a 3-pointer for Berryville.
Berryville built a seven-point lead in the second frame, but the period ended with four-straight points from Edwards to tie the contest at 34 at halftime.
Edwards hit a shot midway through the third period to cut the Berryville lead to 40-38, but the Bobcats got a basket from Davidson and Lucas before ending a 7-0 run with a 3-pointer from Davidson.
Bonds connected with two treys in the last 1:02 of the third period to get Harrison within, 53-49, but Davidson drove to the basket for an uncontested layup before the buzzer to put the Bobcats ahead, 55-49.
Landon Chester started the fourth period with two free throw for Berryville.
Later in the frame, Davidson put the Bobcats ahead, 60-55 with two charity tosses.
However, Edwards hit a long shot and then another basket to tie the contest at 60 with 4:01 left in the game.
Berryville didn’t flinch at the comeback attempt. Lucas drove down the right side of the lane to score and Davidson ran by the Harrison defense again for another easy score.
Edwards drained a trey to pull Harrison within, 64-63.
After a free throw by Davidson, Harrison’s offense could not find the basket allowing Berryville to increase its lead.
Harrison will be back in action against Huntsville on Friday night. Berryville will face Shiloh Christian.
Leading Berryville in scoring was Davidson with 24 points. Lucas added 22, Teague eight, Smith and Austin Franklin five each and Chester three.
Edwards was the game’s leading scorer with 27 points. Huskey added 11, Bonds nine, Elliott seven, Gatlin James and Plumlee six each and Abe Glidewell two.