After a 64-64 tie in the last 14 seconds of the game, Lynchburg-Clay suffered a crushing loss at home Tuesday night when rival Eastern High School crushed a 2-point layup with two seconds on the clock.
And, despite a desperate half-court buzzer beater attempt from Joe Giordano in the last split-second, the Warriors took the win with a final score of 66-64.
The first quarter saw both teams make 15-point gains, staying neck-and-neck throughout.
The Mustangs took the lead in the second quarter thanks to Giordano’s shooting and an oppressive defense. By the half, the score was 33-29 with the Mustangs on top.
The Warriors woke up in the third quarter when Garyn Purdy made a 3-point shot that took the Warriors into the lead at 35-33 with 6:30 on the clock.
Both teams worked hard in the third quarter, but despite Lynchburg’s best efforts, the period ended with 50-45 on the scoreboard with the guests on top.
The Mustangs tried to creep back into the lead when Eric McLaughlin made a long 3-point shot in the first two and a half minutes of the final quarter, taking the score to 50-48, but it just wasn’t enough to stand up to the Warriors’ pressure.
McLaughlin tied things up later in the quarter with another long three, taking the score to 64-64 with 0:14 on the clock, but Blake Riadon made a wild 2-point layup in the last two seconds of the game that took the Warriors to the win at 66-64.
“We didn’t defend well, we didn’t feel like we had a sense of urgency the whole night and we weren’t physical,” said head coach Matt Carson. “That’s on me as head coach, why we’re like that at this point in the season, I don’t know, but we’re going to have to get better at that moving forward. We’ll try to fix what we can get fixed. It’s a long season ahead of us.”
Lynchburg-Clay now sits at a 4-1 overall record, 3-1 in conference.
The Mustangs will take on Manchester at home Friday, Dec. 16 at 7:30 p.m.
Lynchburg-Clay — 15 18 12 19 — 64
Eastern — 15 14 21 16 — 66
LCHS: Pierson (1)-3; McLaughlin 3(4)-4/5-22; Heindel 1-1/2-3; Giordano 6(2)-5/6-23; Lampkin (3)-9; Stroop 2-4
EHS: Hamilton (1)-3; Lainhart 2-0/1-4; Purdy 3(5)-4/7-25; Deiner 1-0/2-2; Riadon 5-5/6-15; Strivers 2-2/4-6; Tolle 4-1/2-9; Marton 1-2
Reach David Wright at 937-402-2570 or on Twitter @SportsWrighter.