Sheridan’s Austen Theiss dunks the ball in the Friday night game against Lake Hamilton. (Special to the Commercial/William Harvey)
SHERIDAN – Sheridan junior Dylan Morris hit a three-pointer with eight seconds left Friday night to lift the Yellowjackets to a 40-38 win over Lake Hamilton, their ninth straight win and their first in the 7A/6A-South Conference.
“I remember him saying, when we were leaving the huddle, ‘If I’m open, do you want me to shoot the three?,’” Sheridan head coach Joe Scott said. “And I said, ‘I want to you to play basketball.’
“’Do what you feel is necessary.’”
Lake Hamilton took a 38-37 lead with about 1:48 left in the game, but Sheridan (10-3, 1-0 in 7A/6A) was able to get the ball back with less than 30 seconds left after a turnover at halfcourt.
That’s when Scott called a timeout and drew up the play.
“We drew up the overload set, where we could get the short corner and mid-post,” Scott said. “We brought in Morris along that baseline and we were trying to overload with our 6-7 (Austen) Theiss.”
It was only the fourth time the whole game in which Sheridan led.
The Yellowjackets grabbed their first lead when Theiss dunked to open the game. A three-pointer by Morris gave them a 5-2 lead, but Sheridan didn’t lead again until Theiss scored late in the fourth quarter for a 37-36 lead.
Theiss and Morris led Sheridan with 12 points each. Senior Brady Bowlin contributed with six points.
“It was one of the most physical games I’ve been apart of,” Scott said. “And we didn’t even shoot a single free throw the whole game.
“They shot 19 free throws to our zero.”
Scott said it was Sheridan’s goal ‘to pound the ball down low every time.’
“We got the ball inside almost every time,” Scott said. “And somehow we didn’t get a foul.
“But we won with them shooting 19 free throws to our zero.”
Sheridan trailed 25-15 at the half, after the Yellowjackets scored just five points in the second quarter.
“Conference games are just different kind of emotion, a different kind of intensity,” Scott said. “We just kind of cruised here these last few games.”
Before the game, Scott told the team that “Lake Hamilton is going to come in here and play.”
“It is kind of a rivalry and it is the first conference game,” Scott said. “I thought we came out real sluggish.
“We missed some easy, easy baskets, a couple dunks and put some putbacks around that we normally make.”
Sheridan started the third quarter on an 8-0 run, including two steals and four points from Morris, to get with two points before Lake Hamilton (6-7, 0-1) scored again to take a 27-23 lead.
By the end of the third quarter, Sheridan trailed 35-29.
“Hats off to Hamilton, they made some shots when necessary,” Scott said.
Sheridan’s defense held Lake Hamilton to just three points in the fourth quarter.
The Yellowjackets will play at El Dorado on Tuesday.