BASKETBALL: College Park tops Conroe 52-50 in final game of the regular season
THE WOODLANDS, Texas — The College Park Cavaliers pulled a hard-fought 52-50 victory over Conroe put pressure on them in their final game of the regular season.
The Tigers won the tip off at the start of the game, but a three-point shot by sophomore guard Shannon Scott gave the Cavaliers the first points on the board. Conroe’s Josh Berry responded with two points and was followed by another two points for the Tigers, putting College park behind by one point. A foul put College Park’s Quentin Grimes at the free-throw line, where he was able to tie up the score 4-4. Layups on both sides maintained the tie, but two free-throws put Conroe back in the lead. However, another Cavalier three-pointer and two free-throws by McKinley Green pushed College Park ahead 10-8. After some back and forth scoring in the last minute of the first quarter, the Cavaliers were ahead 13-10.
Conroe entered the second quarter with a layup by Jay Lewis, but the cavaliers responded by putting another three points in the net. After two more points for the Tigers, a foul put Grimes back at the free-throw line, bringing the score to a close 17-14. Grimes put another two points on the board after Conroe scored at their free throw line with jus over three minutes left in the game. Senior Tremont Moore added two more free-throws for the Tigers, but layups on Chase Lane and Grimes kept the Cavaliers ahead of their opponent. Conroe got another two points with just over 30 seconds left in the half but were left trailing behind College Park 23-19 at halftime.
Things started looking up for the Tigers as they came into the second half with two free throws and a layup, but a three-point shot off of Shannon Scott helped the Cavaliers maintain their lead. Despite several shots for the Tigers, the Cavalier’s three-point game stayed strong and gave them the upper hand over Conroe. With things seemingly slowing down in the third quarter, some big shots put the Tigers back in the lead 36-35, but some shots on both sides ended the third quarter with a 38-38 tie.
The Tigers came into the final quarter of the game by breaking the tie, but the Cavaliers evened it back up with a shot by Dax de Boer, who would later pull College Park back in the lead. A foul put McKinley Green at the free throw line, where he added another point to the Cavalier’s score, followed by a two point shots by Quincey Trammell and Quentin Grimes, bringing the score to 47-40, College Park.
Conroe followed two de Boer free throws with two three-point shots, closing the gap back up on the Cavaliers with less than two minutes left in the game. Another basket for Conroe put pressure on the Cavaliers as they were ahead by just one point, and some back and forth scores kept the match close. With under 20 seconds left on the clock, Grimes was at the free throw line and scored for the Cavaliers, bringing them to their final score of 52-50, College Park.
Glad to have claimed a win in their final game of the regular season after the amount of pressure put on his team by Conroe, College Park Head Coach Clifton McNeely said both teams were in survival mode, and having the win would be crucial to their season.
“We just had to relax and take care of the ball,” McNeely said. “Obviously, we didn’t make free throws down the stretch, and that put a little more pressure on us, and I thought the first half we really settled for the long, jump shots instead of attacking the basket and attacking the rim. We did a better job in the second half. We were fortunate to survive that last shot attempt by [Jay Lewis].”
The playoff spots for the district will be determined Friday, February 19 in tie breaker match-ups.