HSBBB: Sharks surge in fourth to stun Seahawks

HSBBB: Sharks surge in fourth to stun Seahawks

As the second half tipped off Tuesday night at the Nest, Hilton Head High was on the brink of burying another region foe. But the May River Sharks refused to quit and pulled off a tremendous comeback victory to stun the defending Lower State champs.

Gavin Blocker put up 18 points, including seven in the final period, and the Sharks overcame a 10-point deficit Tuesday to knock off the Seahawks 58-54 on the road. 

It was a fast-paced start to the Region 7-4A battle, as Blocker nailed a 3-pointer on his team’s opening possession before Garvin Douglas sank a pair of free throws to take a 5-1 lead. The Seahawks struggled to hold onto the basketball at the outset, while the visitors found ways to get to the free-throw line and excelled on the glass. But Hilton Head High used its terrific transition game for quick layups to turn the tide, as Zac Morris hooked up with Karyce Campbell for a layup before Morris drove to the hole to go on top 11-10. 

The teams continued to trade buckets in the second quarter as Morris rattled off six straight points to keep pace with an efficient MRHS attack. May River’s Josh Evander sunk a crafty jumper to get back within one, but the Sharks couldn’t stop the hot shooting of Jeremiah Stevens. The senior guard caught fire late in the half, scoring on a drive to the basket before draining a 3-pointer and assisting on a Jayden Gilliam layup to pull off a 7-0 run and go into the locker room up 33-25. 

The Seahawks appeared to be in full control to begin the second half after a quick Alex Smith layup pushed the lead to double digits, but the Sharks scored on their next three possessions to cut it to just four. Hilton Head High ran into a lapse on the offensive end, committing a string of turnovers while missing five of six free throws in the third period. But another unlikely Seahawk spark came to the rescue, as Jo’Corey Walters scored seven straight HHIHS points sparked by a corner three to put the Seahawks back up eight going into the fourth. 

The Sharks continued to battle and cashed in from the foul line, including on a costly HHIHS lane violation to make it a three-point game. Chane Brown’s squad had a number of solid looks down the stretch to try to maintain the lead, but the Seahawks couldn’t knock down any outside shots. May River’s impressive offense took advantage, scoring on five straight possessions as the Sharks stormed ahead on a 9-0 run to go up 52-49. 

A couple of unforced errors gave the home team a chance to respond, but the Sharks locked down on defense to seal a massive region victory.

Blocker was the catalyst to the May River rally, scoring 18 points while helping deliver a number of key stops on the defensive end. Evander recorded 14 points, James Layman notched 12, and Douglas added 10 while going a perfect 8-for-8 at the free-throw line.

Stevens led the Seahawks with 12 points, and Morris scored 11.

May River (9-4, 3-1) has won three straight games and will host Lucy Beckham on Friday. Hilton Head High (8-7, 3-2) will take Friday off before returning to action Tuesday at James Island.

By Wes Kerr

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