February 23, 2011 Edition

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The Black Rock senior boys basketball team defeated Bay 74-70 in the finals of the 1A-3 East District Tournament Saturday night. Team members include (front, from left): Jason Harper, Cody Clairday, Tyler Freeman, Roger Clements, Min You, Cooper Liles; (back) Ricky Womack, Tadd Fore, Sam Clem, Joe Paul Carey, Khris Foster, Hunter Horton, Tyler Roby, Tyler Newell, Josh Vidal and head coach Jeff Womack.
Submitted Photos ~ Debbie Richey

Zebras are district champs



Black Rock's Tyler Newell grabs a rebound during the Zebras' 74-70 win over Bay in the district tournament finals. Also lined up under the goal are teammates Tyler Roby (#23) and Hunter Horton (#34).


Black Rock's Haley Slusser shoots a basket during the Lady Zebras' 46-42 overtime loss to Armorel in the semifinals of district tournament play. Black Rock hosted the tournament.
Nathan Hibbard
Staff Writer

Black Rock's Tyler Newell scored the game's final four points as the Zebras outlasted the Bay Yellowjackets 74-70 in the finals of the 1A-3 East District Basketball Tournament Saturday night at Black Rock.

Bay led 21-19 at the end of the first quarter, but Black Rock played a strong second period to take a 40-34 lead into the locker room at halftime.

The Zebras led 60-52 after three quarters and stretched the lead to as many as 10 points in the final period before the Yellowjackets rallied to tie the game at 68-68 with two minutes to play.

Black Rock took a 70-68 lead on free throws by Newell and Tyler Roby, however, a steal and dunk by Bay's Noah Sitzer knotted the contest 70-70 with a minute remaining.

Newell put the Zebras ahead to stay on Black Rock's next possession when he scored from inside the paint for a 72-70 advantage with 28 seconds to play. Bay went for the lead on their ensuing possession, but a three-pointer was off the mark and Newell was fouled as he grabbed the defensive rebound. His two free throws iced the game with three seconds on the clock.

Joe Paul Carey led Black Rock with 19 points, while Sam Clem tallied 18. Newell, Roby and Khris Foster each finished with 11 points.

Black Rock improved its record to 31-4 and will be the conference's top seed in the 1A Region 2 Tournament, which will be hosted by Izard County Consolidated at Brockwell. The Zebras will open against Calico Rock tonight at 8:30.

Semifinals

The Zebras earned their spot in the finals by defeating Crowley's Ridge Academy 51-46 in a semifinal game on Feb. 16.

CRA led 13-10 after one quarter before the Zebras exploded in the second period, outscoring the Falcons 21-8 to take a 31-21 lead into halftime. Black Rock extended its lead to 38-25 heading into the fourth quarter and withstood a late rally by the Falcons to earn the win.

Clem led the Zebras with 18 points, and Carey added 13. Hunter Horton had 10 points and 12 rebounds.

Senior girls

The Black Rock Lady Zebras defeated Weiner 52-46 in first-round action on Feb. 14 and advanced to meet top-seeded Armorel in the semifinals on Feb. 16.

The Lady Zebras had the home fans cheering, leading the Lady Tigers 27-14 at halftime and 34-26 after three periods. Armorel staged a fourth-quarter comeback taking a 36-34 lead late in the contest. A basket by Black Rock's Haley Slusser in the final seconds sent the game into overtime tied 36-36.

Armorel outscored the Lady Zebras 10-6 in the extra period to take the win.

Slusser led the Lady Zebras with 20 points and five assists.

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