KNOXVILLE — For the fourth time this season, Scott High played Fulton to the wire on Tuesday, March 3. But, for the fourth time this season, it was the Falcons who prevailed — just barely — in the end. And, for the first time this season, Tuesday’s game was an elimination game.
Scott High’s season ended with a 69-64 loss in the Region 2-A semifinals to Fulton on the Falcons’ home floor. The Highlanders led by almost the entirety of the first half, and by as much as eight points, before Fulton seized the momentum in the second half.
In the end, the free throw line was the difference. Fulton got there way too often and didn’t miss many. The Falcons were 19 of 28 from the line, hitting at a 68 percent clip. Scott High, by contrast, was just 8 of 13 from the line.
The 11-point advantage at the line helped Fulton hold off the Highlanders and earn a berth in the Region 2-AA championship game and the Class AA substate, even though Scott had more field goals made — 24 to 21 — than Fulton.
The Highlanders shot 53 percent from the field, including 44 percent from 3-point range.
Sophomore Trey Morrow finished with 30 points and 10 rebounds, yet another double-double in a season filled with them. Playing his final game in a Scott High uniform, Logan Goodman had 15 points and eight rebounds.
Scott High looked like the best team on the floor from the opening tip. With their faithful who made the trip to Knoxville exploding with every made bucket, the Highlanders jumped to a 16-9 lead and forced Fulton coach Jody Wright to burn an early time out. The score was 21-16 after the first quarter.
From there, the Highlanders built a 28-20 lead in the second quarter, forcing Wright to again use a time out. But Fulton roared back in less than a minute, hitting two 3-point shots to tie the game at 28. The Falcons grabbed a brief lead, though Scott High went back in front at the half, 35-34.
The third quarter belonged to Fulton. The Falcons went on a 16-9 run overall, and led by as much as eight points.
Scott High clawed back in the fourth quarter, cutting the Fulton deficit to three. The Highlanders had two opportunities to tie the game, but 3-point shots were off the mark. Fulton was ultimately able to make enough free throws down the stretch to stave off the Highlanders’ comeback effort.
Tuesday’s game capped a season that saw Scott High finish with a 24-7 record. The Highlanders advanced beyond the regional quarterfinals for the first time in the 21st century, and tied the 2010-2011 team for the most wins in the modern era, with 24. At one point during the season, the Highlanders were 16-0 and ranked among the best teams in the state.
Tuesday’s game was the last for three Scott High seniors, including Logan Goodman, Jon Hayden Strunk and Mason Owens.
SCOTT (64): Morrow 30, Goodman 15, West 9, Strunk 6, Tucker 4.
FULTON (69): Lacy 24, Holt 14, Hatchett 11, Sweat 7, Robinson 6, Holland 4, Jenkins 3.