In one of its most stunning and disappointing losses in recent memory, Grand Haven’s varsity boys basketball team saw No. 4-ranked East Kentwood battle back from a late deficit to edge the Buccaneers, 56-49, in the O-K Red Conference opener for both teams.
The Buccaneers led the unbeaten Falcons, 47-41, with a little over two minutes to play.
The Falcons, however, proved their perfect record is no fluke. They outscored the Bucs 15-2 over the closing 120, thanks to the hot hand of senior point guard Jaylen Carter.
Carter averages around 18 points per game, but hadn’t scored going into the fourth quarter of Tuesday’s contest.
Then he absolutely caught fire, pouring in 14 fourth-quarter points. His 3-pointer early in the fourth helped spark the Falcons’ comeback, and his second triple, with a hand in his face, broke a 47-all tie with 50 seconds remaining.
“Jaylen has a tendancy to try to take games over,” said Falcons’ coach Jeff Anama. Tonight, I thought he was patient until the end, when you could see he didn’t want to let us lose.”
After holding East Kentwood down for much of the night, the Bucs couldn’t contain the powerful Falcons’ offense in the closing minutes. East Kentwood scored on seven of its last eight possessions.
“We were up 43-36 at one point, but I thought we rushed a couple shots, and we missed a couple block-outs,” said Bucs’ coach Steve Hewitt, whose team falls to 5-5 on the year. “It’s the little things, and against an 8-0 team, you’re not going to win if you don’t do the little things.”
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