published Saturday, December 15th, 2012

Panthers outlast surging Rams, 60-56

Filling the fourth quarter with layups and free throws, Brainerd held off Tyner's second-half charge and defeated the Rams 60-56 in a District 6-AA high school basketball game Friday night at Brainerd.

The Panthers led by three heading to the fourth quarter, where their four field goals were three layups and Orlando Moore's dunk with 2:44 to play. The rest of their scoring in the period came from the free-throw line, capped by Marques Tipton's 4-for-4 showing in the last 33.7 seconds.

Brainerd (6-4, 4-1) trailed by a point after one quarter but outscored the Rams 21-8 in the second and took a 32-20 lead at halftime. Even so, Panthers coach Robert High was only half pleased.

"We were doing a good job on defense," High said. "We stood around on offense. There were some times we had one pass and a shot. That's not the way we play."

Jemicah Bowman sparked Tyner's rally, which began with a 7-0 run to start the third quarter. With Bowman scoring a game-high 27 points, the Rams got as close as 56-54 on his sixth and final 3-point goal before Tipton's free throws closed them out.

"We sat back in a zone and let them shoot 3s," High said. "Here again, we didn't think they'd make more than they'd miss."

Tipton paced Brainerd with 23 points despite failing to score in the first quarter. Moore's points came on seven 2-point goals, helping the Panthers to a 21-13 edge in that department. Devonte Cooper added 10 points.

about Kelley Smiddie...

Kelley Smiddie is a sports writer who has worked at the Times Free Press for 12 years. He covers high school sports and softball. Kelley’s hometown is Chattanooga, and he graduated from Brainerd High School and graduated Chattanooga State and UTC. Contact Kelley at 423-757-6653 or ksmiddie@timesfreepress.com.

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