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SHS falls by 3 to McKenzie, PHS wins

Straughn’s boys couldn’t overcome an early 10-point deficit and fell to McKenzie on Friday night, 60-57, at the Straughn Christmas Shoot Out.

Straughn trailed 14-4 just four minutes into the game, and was down 21-12 at the end of the first quarter. But Straughn played much better defense the rest of the way, and got as close as two points but could never tie or take the lead.

“First off, my hat’s off to McKenzie,” Straughn coach Todd Reynolds said. “They came out like they wanted to win the game, and we didn’t have an answer. We made too many mental errors and missed too many free throws to win this game tonight.”

Straughn trailed 47-40 after three quarters of play and played neck-and-neck with McKenzie in the final eight minutes. Straughn’s Jacob Bybee hit a 3-pointer with 1:02 left that cut McKenzie’s lead to 56-54. On the next possession, McKenzie was called for a traveling violation, and Straughn had a short jumper rim out that would have tied the game.

McKenzie’s Jarvis Womack dunked the ball with 24 seconds left to put his team up 59-55, but Straughn quickly answered when Bryan Walker put in a short jumper with 10 seconds left. Straughn then quickly fouled McKenzie’s Melvin Owens, who made one of two free throws. Straughn’s desperation last-second 3-pointer fell well short.

“We made mistakes that we work on every day in practice, and that’s what’s so frustrating,” Reynolds said. “We’ll just have to get a good night’s sleep and try to come out tomorrow with a better effort.”

Chris Humphries led Straughn with nine points. Malcolm Perrin, Austin Pickrel, Walker and Bybee each added eight.

Straughn will face Butler County Magnet in the third-place game tonight at 6:30.

Pleasant Home 41, Kinston 40

Pleasant Home’s Colter Poole hit a 3-pointer in the last three seconds of the game to give the Eagles the win.

Pleasant Home will face Red Level in the fifth-place game tonight at 5. Red Level advanced with a 57-47 win over Goshen on Friday. Also Friday, Brantley defeated Butler County Magnet, 67-51.

Straughn 64, Goshen 34

Straughn’s C.J. Christopher led the Tigers with 19 points in their opening-round win over Goshen on Thursday night.