Dollarway outscored Pine Bluff 6-2 in overtime as the Cardinals (2-1) defeated the Zebras 56-52 for the second straight year in the Zebra Invitational on Monday afternoon.
“We didn’t have to do any preparing to get these boys up for this game,” Dollarway head coach Ellis “Chief” Berry said. “This is the game that they have been waiting on.
“I tell you what, they played great. It was a great team ball and team effort.”
Dollarway made just one field goal in overtime – a putback by Darius Robinson. But the Cardinals made 4 of 6 at the free throw line to seal the victory.
“We still got a few kinks to get out,” Berry said. “Other than that, everything fell into place.”
With less than 20 seconds left in regulation, Dollarway tied the game when senior Kabion Ento hit a three-pointer to make the score 50-50.
“Right there at the end, I told them don’t let 10 shoot,” Pine Bluff head coach Carl Smith said. “We don’t mind giving up a two.
“…But he knocked down a big shot. That turned the game and that gave them the momentum (heading into overtime).”
Ento, who was recently named the Southeast Arkansas Defensive Player of the Year, finished the game with 26 points to lead Dollarway in scoring for the second straight game.
“I knew when he hit his first two that tonight was his night,” Berry said. “And he proved it.
“He did a good job. Just like all last year. I’m leaning on (Joshua) Liddell and Ento this year.”
Senior Liddell finished with 11 points for the Cardinals.
“That is what you expect seniors to step up to do,” Berry said of Ento’s game-tying shot.
By the end of the first quarter, Dollarway was trailing 18-14. But thanks to Ento, who scored 13 of his points in the second quarter, the Cardinals had a 34-31 lead heading into halftime.
Following a bucket by Pine Bluff’s Jamul Pryor, Ento scored seven straight points – including one of his six three-pointers – to tie the game at 26.
Pine Bluff’s J’marlos Johnson hit one of two from the line and nailed an inside basket to give the Zebras a 29-26 lead with less than 4 minutes left to play. A steal and bucket by Roosevelt Murray stretched the lead to five.
“Typical rivalry,” Smith said. “It comes down to two teams battling it out on the court. They got the better of us.
“We played hard and they played hard. But at the end, it comes down to missed assignments and it cost us the game.”
Ento his third three-pointer of the second quarter to cut the deficit to 31-29 and with less than a minute to play in the first half, Gujuan Christmas hit a three-pointer to take a 32-31 lead. Robinson quickly followed with a bucket to give the Cardinals the three-point lead.
“We will learn from it,” Smith said. “Hopefully you learn from it and be a better team.”
Johnson led Pine Bluff with 18 points and Ladarius Skelton contributed with 11 points.
“(Johnson) had a good first half,” Smith said. “He had a cut under his eye and we had to take him out to try to stop the bleeding.
“…We probably lost a little momentum with him out, especially with the way he was playing.”
Pine Bluff had a 48-47 lead with 1:29 left and following a missed free throw by Dollarway, the Zebras ran almost a full minute off the clock before being fouled.
Marcus Thomas knocked down both free throws to give the Zebras the 50-47 lead with about 24 seconds left.
Following a timeout by Pine Bluff, Ento hit the game tying three-pointer right in front of his own bench.
“When you put teams out there like that, we aren’t thinking about two or three games in a row,” Smith said of playing in the Invitational. “We are thinking about the outcome in the game and trying to get it in our favor.
“That just didn’t happen tonight.”
Clarendon 72, Little Rock McClellan 69 (OT)
Styleen Tyler scored 25 points and was named tournament MVP after leading Clarendon to a 72-69 win over Little Rock McClellan in overtime in the championship game of the Zebra Invitational on Monday afternoon.
Both teams were undefeated going into the match-up and Clarendon was able to get the three-point victory. Richard Knox contributed nine points for Clarendon.
Keith Hayes scored 30 points to lead McClellan.
Little Rock Mills 72, Dumas 51
Jeremiah Toney scored 22 points to lead Little Rock Mills to a 72-51 victory over Dumas on the final day of the Zebra Invitational.
Ken Madden scored double digits for the third straight game as he led Dumas with 13 points.