It has been a long time coming, but the Monroe County Falcons have finally earned something they’ve been searching for. The Falcons (20-9) knocked off Glasgow (15-12) 67-64 in overtime Tuesday in the first round of the District 15 Boys Basketball Tournament at Glasgow High School.
The win marks the first time since the 2010-11 season the Falcons have gotten through the first round of the tournament and earned an automatic berth in next week’s regional tournament.
“It has been two years since we’ve been in this position. In each of the last two years, we’ve gone home early,” said Monroe County coach Steve Kirkpatrick. “It feels very good to get through the first round of the district.
“But give Glasgow credit. They’re an extremely well-coached team and they have great players like the (Anthony) Walker kid, and Milas Norris and Connor Glass. Norris is a beast inside and Glass is a great shooter. And then you’ve got the Jacob Poynter kid inside.”
The Falcons will play the winner of Wednesday’s game between Barren County and Allen County-Scottsville in Friday’s championship game. Tipoff is set for 7 p.m.
“There is not a whole lot you can say,” said Glasgow coach John Tinsley. “We were the fourth seed in the tournament, but I thought we were the better team tonight. We had our chances to win the game; we just couldn’t close it out in the end.”
James Kingery, who came off the bench to score eight points for Glasgow, put the Scotties in front 60-58 with a bucket to open the extra period. Dillon Geralds answered for the Falcons to tie the game. Poynter hit one of two free throws for the Scotties, but Lincoln Arnett came back with a big 3-pointer for Monroe County to give the Falcons a 63-61 lead.
Norris came down on the Scotties’ next possession and converted a 3-point play to give Glasgow the lead again at 64-63 with 15 seconds to go. The Falcons brought the ball down the court and caught a break when Glass was called for a foul. Skyler Geralds calmly converted both free throws to make it a 65-64 game for the Falcons.
And on the ensuing possession, Walker brought the ball down the court for the Scotties and drove to the basket. No foul was called on the play, but the ball went out of bounds and the Falcons took possession. Skyler Geralds was fouled again in the final seconds and he hit both free throws to post the final 67-64 margin.
“We got a big team effort from all the guys tonight,” Kirkpatrick said. “I thought Lincoln Arnett came up big for us tonight and hit a couple of big 3-pointers in the fourth quarter. Dillon Geralds played well and, of course, hit the 3-pointer to send it to overtime. And Skyler Geralds had a great game.”
Dillon Geralds struggled early, but ended up with 18 points on the night to lead Monroe County. Skyler Geralds had 17 points with six assists and three steals. Arnett came off the bench to get 13 points, while Garrett Crowe scored 11. Gibril Summers added six points and Devin Gearlds scored two.
Walker was tremendous for the Scotties. He finished with 23 points, five assists and two steals. He hit five of eight from long range and nine of 15 from the field. Norris added 14 points, while Glass, Poynter and Kingery added eight points each. Julius Shirley chipped in with three points.
The Scotties opened up the game with a smothering defense and the pressure took its toll on Monroe County. Glasgow grabbed a 14-10 advantage after one quarter and took a 26-22 lead into the locker room. At halftime, Dillon Geralds, Monroe County’s leading scorer, had only five points.
The Scotties held off a late charge by the Falcons and led 40-33 going into the final eight minutes. A 3-pointer from way down town by Walker gave the Scotties a 45-37 advantage with 7:00 to go in regulation. The Scotties’ lead stayed around seven points until Crowe sank two free throws and Dillon Geralds scored on a layup to cut the Glasgow lead to 57-53 with 1:09 to go.
Glass hit one of two free throws for Glasgow to make it 58-53, but Monroe County got a jumper from Arnett with 0:34 seconds on the clock, and after a big stop on defense, Monroe County came down with time running out and Dillon Geralds connected from the top of the key to tie the game at 58-58 to send it into overtime.