Early in the fourth quarter of Friday night’s championship of the Fordland Invitational, the Seymour Middle School “A” boys’ basketball team cut its deficit to top-seeded Hartville to a single point at 18-17.
“It was anyone’s game at that point,” Tiger head coach Chris Hastings said.
However, from that point on, Seymour was held to just four points over the game’s final six minutes, while Hartville scored 12.
The end result was a 30-21 loss.
“We played hard,” Hastings said. “The boys followed the game plan. But we just had trouble scoring, which has been an issue for us at times this season.”
Scoring troubles plagued the Tigers in the opening frame as Hartville had a 7-0 lead after one quarter.
“I felt we were fortunate to only be down by seven points,” Hastings said.
“But our defensive effort was good all night.”
By halftime, Seymour had cut its deficit to four points at 11-7.
“I’m proud of the effort,” Hastings noted. “This one easily could’ve gotten away from us in the first quarter. That didn’t happen. Instead, we fought back. Until very late in the game, we had our chances to win the game if we just could’ve had some shots fall.”
Truman Helms led Seymour’s scoring with 8 points.
Wyatt Henry added 6, while Julius McDowell scored 3.
With 2 points each were Reece Hepko and Braylon Johnson.
In the tourney’s opening round on Monday, Oct. 4, the Tigers defeated Chadwick in a thriller.
Seymour won 23-21.
At halftime, the Tigers were down 16-6.
“We held (Chadwick) to just five points in the second half, and three of those (points) came on a three-point shot as the final buzzer sounded,” Hastings said.
“I’ll give credit to the boys for playing an excellent second half. We were down by 10 points at the half.”
Henry paced Seymour’s scoring attack with 12 points, 10 of them coming in the fourth quarter, including a pair of key three-pointers.
McDowell added 9 points, while Helms scored 2.
After the tourney, Seymour’s record stood at 7-4.
The Tigers played Springfield Greenwood late Monday.
On Saturday, Seymour begins play at the annual Summit Conference tourney, where the Tigers are seeded third.
More on the tournament can be found in a separate story in this edition.