Fourth-quarter run helps Avery sneak past Polk boys basketball team

Published 8:00 am Thursday, January 10, 2019

Polk County came close to notching its first win Tuesday, but Avery held off a determined Wolverine squad to take a 45-38 win in Western Highlands Conference boys basketball action at Polk.

The Wolverines (0-10, 0-2) led early in the third quarter and trailed just 33-30 entering the fourth, with Tyler Staley hitting one of his three 3-pointers in the game with 10 seconds left in the period for that margin.

But Avery (3-8, 1-1) opened the fourth quarter with five points in the first minute and extended the lead to 42-32 midway through the period.

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Dominique Carson and Amir Gary hit a pair of 3-pointers to cut the deficit in half with 1:50 left at 43-38. Polk then had three opportunities to pull even closer, but could not get a pair of 3-point attempts and a short jumper to fall, allowing the Vikings to hold on for the win.

Until Avery’s late run, the game was a back-and-forth battle. Evan Krug’s four-point play early in the game pushed Avery ahead by six, but Polk County fought back and grabbed an 11-10 edge on an Ezekiel Hermann basket late in the quarter.

Polk County played its third straight game without leading scorer Clark Phipps, sidelined by an injury. Phipps might return later this week.

Gary and Staley led Polk County with nine points each, with Hermann and Carson scoring seven each. Keyandre Thomas added four points and Qualon Sutton scored two.

Krug scored 17 of his game-high 21 points in the first half to lead Avery.

The Wolverines will travel Thursday to face Piedmont Community Charter in a nonconference game before returning home Friday to face Mitchell.

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