Rockets hold off Vikings, salvage split

Wednesday, December 17, 2014
Forrest's Colton Cook (22) nails one of his three treys in the contest as the Rockets beat the Vikings 57-55 in Unionville Monday night. Photos by Anthony S. Puca

The Forrest Rockets, propelled by a huge third quarter, outlasted the Community Vikings 57-55 in Unionville Monday night, salvaging a split as the Lady Rockets lost their second consecutive district game by one point.

Rockets

The Rockets trailed 13-9 after the first quarter, tallying all of their points on a pair of 3-pointers by Colton Cook and a trey by Will Edmonson.

Caleb Hogan drilled a 3-pointer for the Rockets, sparking a second quarter comeback, as Forrest would tie the game at 16-16 on a Will Edmonson fast-break bucket off a Blake Leonard blocked shot.

Austin Cagle came back with a 3-pointer for the Vikings, but Edmonson matched the trey at the other end, tying the game at 19.

Community would outscore the Rockets 4-1 in the final minute of the first half, taking a 23-20 lead.

Forrest came out on fire to begin the second half as Jacob Jones scored and Blake Leonard added two more points off a steal, putting the Rockets in front.

Tyler Broiles seesawed the lead back to the Vikings before Cook and Edmonson went downtown, but Cagle nailed a 3-pointer, tying the game for the last time.

Ahead to stay

Edmondson gave the Rockets the lead for good when he scored on a three-point play, driving to the hoop and the senior followed that with a steal and score, making it 35-30.

Donovan Murray heated up for Forrest, scoring eight out of the next 10 points for the Rockets in the final two minutes of the period, extending the Rockets' lead to 10 points at 45-35.

Forrest would still lead by nine points after a Jones basket with five minutes left in the game, but the Vikings tried to make the home-court comeback, slicing the Rockets' lead to four points with two minutes left, and to three points with nine seconds left.

Edmonson iced the game with one free throw, making it a two-possession game, and the Vikings ran out of time.

Forrest (5-8, 2-2) was led in the scoring column by Edmonson, who tossed in a game-high 21 points, including three treys in the contest.

Cook also had a trio of long bombs and finished with 14 points, while Murray ended up with eight points, Caleb Hogan added five points, Jones and Leonard had four points each, and Jesse Pruitt and Korbin Brown tallied one marker apiece.

Lady Rockets

Savannah Brothers (21) had a hot hand for the Lady Rockets, knocking down five 3-pointers for Forrest, who fell 63-62 in Unionville.

The Lady Rockets started their game with a bang as Savannah Brothers (3) and Caitlin Yost (2) combined for five 3-pointers in the first five minutes of the game to take a 15-7 lead.

Community settled in and outscored Forrest 10-5 the remainder of the first quarter, cutting the deficit to three points after the first eight minutes.

The Viqueens surged to begin the second quarter, eventually taking a 24-23 lead on a Mercedes Huntley 3-pointer.

Unionville would go ahead by five late, but a Margaret Bryan basket and Evans bucket to end the first half made it 31-29 ballgame.

A Hannah Evans three-bomb to begin the second half gave Forrest a 32-31 lead and it would turn into a battle from downtown over the next several minutes as both teams combined for five 3-pointers with the last one coming by Sarah Pierce, sparking the Viqueens to a 51-44 lead after three periods.

Community would hold firm for the first five minutes of the fourth quarter, leading 57-49 when Sierra Waggoner drilled a long-range missile and after a Community missed shot, Yost went deep as well, making it a 57-55, forcing a Viqueen timeout with 2:38 remaining in the contest.

Final efforts

One Huntley freethrow, followed by an Evans basket and a 3-pointer by Community's Davie Barnes made it 61-57 in favor of the home squad before Brothers made it a one-point game on a 3-pointer with 1:20 to go in the battle.

After missing the front end of a one-and-one from the free-throw line, Yost raced in for the go-ahead bucket and the action went to the other end where Community had four attempts at the basket before Barnes snuck in for the rebound and put-back with three ticks left on the clock.

Forrest could not get off a shot after a timeout, dropping their second straight game after winning nine in a row.

The Lady Rockets (10-3, 2-2) host Fayetteville (3-5, 0-4) Friday night with game time set for 6 p.m.

Yost scored 17 points to lead the Forrest scoring attack, while Brothers had 16, Evans was also in double figures with 16, Bryan and Kyleah Hengesbach ended up with a half dozen apiece, and Waggoner had the one trey.

Pierce led all scorers with 20 points in the contest.