The Macon County Tigers faced York in the Region 4AA semi-finals last Tuesday March 1st at Tennessee Tech.
The winner of this game would earn an invite to the finals and the sub-state.
Both teams seemed to come out and were ready to play. Three pointers by Carnahan and two from Michael Ashburn right out of the gate led fans to believe that this was going to be a high octane contest. However York was ready to play and made five of their first six shots, mainly in the paint. After the first quarter York led 16-11. Both teams seemed to settle into a half court type of slower game. The Dragons maintained a seven point lead thru much of the quarter and took a 34-25 lead with about 3 minutes left in the half. The Tigers were unable to close the distance, with a turnover, missed front end of a 1-and-1, and three missed shots. At the half the score was York 34 Macon 25.
Late in the 3rd, York Center and Tennessee Tech commitment Colton Blevins was pulled with his third foul. The Tigers weren’t able to cut into the lead much and York carried a 47-40 lead into the final quarter. With Blevins back, he picked up his 4th foul 30 seconds into the final quarter and again came out. Macon went on a mini-run and took a lead at 48-47 with 5:20 left in the quarter. At this point Blevins and Gareth Moody, the other Dragon post, accounted for 33 of York’s 47 points so the Dragons brought Blevins back into the game. The back and forth game continued and York took a 3 point lead with 21 seconds left. Senior point guard Matt Austin hit a moon shot to tie the game 55-55 with 7 seconds left and we head to overtime.
The Tigers haven’t been a stranger to extra time this season and have both won and lost in those contests. However, York simply made the plays and capitalized on their opportunities. Macon hit only one of their first six shots and York scored points on 8 of their 10 possessions in overtime and shot 11 of 12 from the free throw line to get the win. With the victory the district 8AA #4 seed Dragons advance to the semi-finals to face Upperman. Final score York 72 Macon County 64.
Scoring was: Seth Carlisle 22, Michael Ashburn 11, Trace McPherson 11, Tyler Carlisle 8, Matt Austin 6, and Clay Carnahan 6. Riley Phillips and Heston King played but did not score. Seth Carlisle and Ashburn both record double-doubles with 11 and 10 rebounds respectively. The Tigers end the season with a record of 21-12.
(Photos by Jullie Collins)