Published 11:01 am Thursday, February 6, 2020

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The Opp High School varsity boys basketball team is headed the area championship after coming back and winning at the buzzer against the Straughn High School Tigers Tuesday night, 48-46.

The Tigers took a strong lead early in the first period, when Demetric Toney made a nice drive to the basket.

Trevion Richardson followed with a jumper to make the score 4-0. 

After a home bucket, the visitors went on a 7-0 surge. 

Richardson went up and off the glass to start the run as Mason Turner delivered a nice move for two. 

Abram Guilford went one-of-two at the line, and Richardson scored off a fast break to give SHS an 11-2 lead. 

Turner added four more while Gabrien Dunn crafted a strong drive to the hoop.  OHS clawed back and trailed 17-9 with eight minutes in the books. Erik Matthews scored nine six for the Bobcats while Bryan Matthews scored a three-pointer in the first period.

The Bobcats carried that momentum into the second period when they scored four straight baskets to tie the game at 17-17.

Guilford put Straughn back in front with a free throw as the two rivals traded hands down the stretch. Ethan Hammon banked a three as Guilford had a nice drive to the basket for a 23-19 advantage. 

E. Matthews scored 10 points in the second period to get the Bobcats on top going into halftime by one point, 24-23.

Two baskets by Turner and Richardson put the Tigers ahead 27-24, before six in a row from the Bobcats put Opp ahead.

Dunn went up and off the glass to close the gap to one as Turner used back-to-back nifty moves for a 33-32 lead for the Tigers.

Opp responded with a three, but Hammon hit a free throw to force a 35-35 tie after three.

Turner kept the Tigers within striking distance, and Guilford went up for two to make the score 41-40. 

Straughn took the lead late in the fourth quarter with 1.2 seconds left in the game to make it 46-45, but B. Matthews scored a buzzer-beater to send the Bobcats to the final against Slocomb, Friday night in Opp.

Turner led the scoring effort for the Tigers with 18 points. E. Matthews led the scoring effort for the Bobcats with 18 points.