Good Hope's Matthew Dixon (10) reacts as a Dora player nabs the ball. / Josh McBrayer
GOOD HOPE – It was a barn burner from start to finish when the Good Hope Raiders suited up to take on the visiting Dora Bulldogs Thursday night. The Bulldogs jumped out to an early 12-4 lead in the first, but Good Hope closed out the quarter on a 5-0 run that pulled the Raiders to within three.
The Raiders were relentless in the second. They played great defense and hit their open shots. Dora stayed close, but another late surge mirrored the first and allowed the Raiders to take a 25-22 lead to the half.
The third quarter belonged to the Bulldogs; they were able to erase the Good Hope lead and forge ahead by seven heading to the last quarter. Dora looked to put the game away in the fourth, but Good Hope is not a team to roll over a quit and they proved it. The Raiders fought and clawed for every point they could muster, erasing the Dora lead and taking over the lead 47-46 with 2:25 left to play.
Dora tied it up at the line and made for some last-second heroics. With two seconds left on the clock, Brent Geeter of Dora hit a huge three from the top of the key to give the Bulldogs a 52-49 lead. Good Hope threw the following inbounds pass away and gave the ball back to the Bulldogs, who held the rock for the last two seconds to secure the victory.
Leading the Bulldogs were Kaleb Towns with 12, Averiun Berry with nine and Geeter with eight.
Good Hope’s Isaac McDonald had a game-high 19. Cole Maddox got 15.
Dora 45, Good Hope 39 (Girls)
The first quarter of action between the Good Hope Lady Raiders and the Dora Lady Bulldogs was nip and tuck for the entire eight minutes. Neither team could gain much of an advantage throughout the frame. However, it was Dora that eventually sank one more basket than Good Hope as they took a 13-11 lead after one.
In the second, the action and the score were just as close, but thanks in part to a big three by 12 with 58 seconds left, Good Hope snatched the lead 20-18 heading into the locker room at halftime.
Dora looked like a different team in the third. With renewed vigor and determination, the Lady Bulldogs took over. They erased the Good Hope lead and built a four-point advantage of their own to go ahead of the Lady Raiders 31-27 going to the fourth.
Good Hope pulled even with Dora just 1:30 into the quarter but suffered a big blow when inside presence Kate Kent fouled out. The Lady Raiders kept the game close until the last three minutes of the quarter when, due to the necessity of having to foul, Dora pulled away at the line and took the game 45-39.
The Lady Bulldogs were led by Deja Pendleton with 14 and Zharia Hubbard with 13.
Good Hope’s Leyton Seal brought in nine, followed by Erika Woodall and Kent, with eight each.
Scores from around the area:
Winston County 59, Addison 44 (Girls)
The Addison Lady Bulldogs looked to start 2018 strong at home against Winston County, but fell by 15 to fall to 9-5 on the season. They will take on Lynn Friday in their second of three straight at home.
Meek 52, Marion County 36 (Girls)
The Meek Lady Tigers picked up a big region win at home against Marion County. They improve to 10-5 on the season and a perfect 4-0 in the region, and will look to stay undefeated Friday at Brilliant.
Addison 55, Winston County 48 (Boys)
Addison improved to 3-6 following a big home win against Winston County. The Bulldogs will look to make it three in a row Friday against Lynn.
Meek 57, Marion County 56 (Boys)
Meek barely squeaked by Marion County in a huge region win at home. The Tigers improved to 13-4 on the season, and are 4-0 in the region. They are 4-1 in their past five games now, and will look to stay red-hot at Brilliant.
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