Bearcats Hand Charleston Conference Loss, Sweep Cedarville


Booneville School District | 1/29/2023

In less than 24 hours between Friday and Saturday night the Booneville Bearcats ruined an unbeaten conference season for Charleston and a homecoming night for Cedarville.

In Charleston Friday night it was a Jace Washburn basket with 12 seconds to go that proved to be the difference in a 48-47 Bearcat win that avenged a conference opening loss.

Playing at 5 p.m. on Saturday it was Washburn again giving the Bearcats the lead – twice –in the fourth quarter and the Bearcats going on to wake a 65-60 win to complete a season sweep of the Pirates.

The wins move the Bearcats to 10-6 on the season and 6-3 in Conference 3A-4 play.

Bearcats 48 Charleston 47

Charleston got off to a 12-4 lead early – the largest difference in the game – but the Bearcats, after a time out, scored the next nine points to take their first lead of the game at 13-12 on a C.J. Johnson (shown) basket 46 seconds before the first quarter ended.

That gave Johnson six points in the quarter and he was on his way to an 18-point night to go along with seven rebounds. The senior was the only Bearcat in double figures.

Charleston retook the lead before the first quarter ended but Raiden Ferguson moved the Bearcats back in front with 7:03 left in the first half.

That was the first of six lead changes in the second quarter, including one on a 3 by Noah Harrel that made it 22-20 and would be the represent the largest Bearcat lead of the game.

Johnson broke a tie at 22 with a free throw and also scored the go-ahead basket that made it 25-24 at the half.

The Tigers scored the first four points of the second half and led until the 3:54 mark of the final quarter.

With 1:41 to play in the third quarter the Tigers opened a 38-31 lead but a Colter Fisher bucket got the Bearcats back to within five through three quarters.

Scoreless to that point Jace Washburn scored his first points to start the final quarter and it was a one possession game again.

Charleston pushed the lead to 41-35 with six minutes to play but Washburn found Ferguson for a basket, Fisher hit a free throw and, after two Tiger free throw misses, a Fisher assist on a Harrel basket tied it at 41-41 with 3:54 left.

A 3 gave the Tigers the lead back and, after a Johnson basket, another 3 made it 47-43 with 2:05 to play.

A Johnson 3 got the Bearcats within one with 1:24 to go and it stayed there until Fisher got the ball inside to Washburn for a bucket to make it 48-47.

Ferguson took a charge with 2.4 seconds to go – his third of the night and second in the fourth quarter – to get the Bearcats the ball back. A Charleston foul after a time out gave the Bearcats a chance to add to the lead but a missed free throw gave the Tigers 1.9 seconds and the ball.

Out of a time out the Tigers had a player get off a shot from just past midcourt but it was off the mark.

Bearcats 65 Cedarville 60

With five players scoring in double digits the Bearcats overcame a 33-23 halftime deficit to beat Cedarville for the second time.

Jace Washburn, who had not scored since the first basket of the game, scored the first points of the second half and Raiden Ferguson hit a 3 to cut Cedarville’s lead in half at 33-28.

Cedarville continued to lead until a C.J. Johnson basket tied it at 37 with 3:32 to go in the third quarter.

Johnson scored 12 in the game.

But, the Pirates scored the next five points and eventually led 46-39 with 1:10 left in the third quarter.

A Dakota Mattson basket got the Bearcats back within five through three quarters. Mattson had four points to that point but finished with 12.

Mattson's basket also started an 8-0 run that included a 3 by Ferguson and eventually saw the Bearcats take a 47-46 lead on a Washburn basket with 5:27 to play.

Washburn had a huge final quarter scoring nine of his 13 points and pulling down five of his 13 rebounds.

After a 3 by Cedarville – the Pirates hit 14 of them – Cedarville was back in front but another Washburn basket gave the Bearcats a 50-49 edge.

A 3 by Mattson extended the lead and another Washburn basket had the Bearcats in front 55-49.

Mattson hit another 3 with 2:07 remaining and the Bearcats were up 58-51.

After Cedarville answered that 3, Ferguson hit another 3 – he led the Bearcats with 16 points – and it was 61-54 with 1:30 to go.

A foul on a three point attempt was converted into three Pirate points 15 seconds later but Fisher scored with 56 seconds left to make it a six point edge. That gave Fisher 10 points.

Cedarville got within a possession but the Bearcats got the ball back with 27.7 to go and Fisher’s fifth assist of the night, on a Mattson basket made it 65-60.

After a miss the Pirates needed four fouls to force free throws and ran out of time before getting to seven fouls necessary to hope for free throw misses.

Early on it was the Bearcats who were threatening to run away from the Pirates, opening a 7-0 lead over the first 2:20 of the game.

But the Pirates got within two twice before the first quarter ended and went on to take the lead on an 8-0 second quarter run, eventually pulling out to a 33-23 edge.

The five Bearcats in double figures accounted for all the scoring with the exception of two points from Macolen Tillery.

The Bearcats are on the road for the fourth straight game Monday at Paris with an expected tip at about 6 p.m. and are scheduled to complete a stretch of four games in five days against Hackett at home on Tuesday.