Hebron Christian made the road trip to Columbus in hopes of bouncing back from a loss to Washington School on Tuesday and to complete the season sweep on Victory Christian, a team they defeated handily earlier in November.
In a Thursday night game where both teams were on fire from behind the three point arc and the floor, the Eagles found themselves behind the eight ball heading into the fourth quarter. A scrappy comeback though saw Hebron fight back into contention, but run out of time as Victory went on to win 69-65.
It was not an easy night for the Eagles as Victory scored the first of many threes to begin the scoring in the first quarter. In a quarter that went both ways, Hebron was on top with a very slim 4-3 lead. After a smooth and clean quarter of basketball, the Eagles had kept their lead at 11-9.
Yet Hebronâ€™s lead was very short-lived in the second quarter as Victory caught fire on the offensive side of the floor with a 9-3 scoring stretch opening up the first two minutes of the quarter. The Victory scoring stretch somewhat threw the Eagles out of rhythm during the quarter, but Hebronâ€™s Hayden Carty was not deterred, knocking down three three-pointers keeping the Eagles in the hunt. At the halftime interval, Victory held a 32-26 lead.
It was a shooting display put on by Victory in the third quarter. Victory Christian knocked down 4 three-pointers and built their lead out to 44-33, outscoring Hebron 12-7. The Eagles did not lie down as Hebron outscored Victory 9-4 closing out the third quarter only trailing 48-42.
In the fourth quarter, Hebron looked like they would not be able to close the gap between Victory and themselves. The Eaglesâ€™ offensive catalyst Will Corbin Rogers had other thoughts hitting back-to-back three-pointers to bring Victory within reach with 3:11 left in the game. With two minutes remaining, Victory only led Hebron 59-55. The Eagles continued their pressure on Victory, trading buckets and keeping Victory in sight. With only six seconds remaining, James Alan Moore scored inside the paint to bring Victory into striking distance 67-65. But Victory sealed the game with two free-throws and ended Hebronâ€™s comebacks hopes, 69-65.
â€śWe just dug a big hole in the second quarter and just could not make our move back into the game until the final quarter,â€ť commented Head Coach Gary Vaughn, â€śThey [Victory] did like any good team does; hit free-throws and maintained their lead.â€ť
Though the Eagles fell in another tight one, Hayden Carty had a season best game. Carty hit eight three pointers and led Hebron in scoring with 28 points. Also contributing for the Eagles were Rogers with 17 points and James Alan Moore knocking down 8 points, and closing out the scoring column was Troy Arnold and Drew Myatt both with 6 points.
The Eagles are now on a two game skid, but hope that this slump will not carry over after the Christmas break. Hebron has only seven games remaining when January comes around and will hope to close out the regular season in high-fashion.