The Clinton Dark Horses escaped a late rally from rival Wallace-Rose Hill on Thursday night to advance to the conference championship game on Friday. There, the Horses will play West Bladen, who has defeated them in their previous two meetings this year.
After leading by as many as 16 in the 4th quarter, Wallace was able to come back and cut the game to a point with 17 seconds left. With the score at 66-65, the Dark Horses were able to stall and chew about 12 seconds off the clock. Kris Williams, the sophomore point guard, was then fouled, and calmly knocked down the pair of free throws. He went 8-10 at the line for the game and 5-6 in the final frame to help Clinton seal their win.
He went on to score 14 points, and Jeremiah Pope scored 17 to lead the Dark Horses. EJ Howard scored 12, and Zion Autry had 8 rebounds and 4 blocks.
“It was a really tough performance from us,” said Clinton’s head coach, Randy Jordan, who is looking for his third conference tournament championship in the four years that he has been at Clinton.
“Kris Williams was no sophomore tonight,” he continued. “He played like a seasoned veteran, and made a lot of big plays for us and big foul shots down the stretch. We knew they would make a run late, but I have to give all the credit to our guys. They played tough and poised, and we are glad to be able to play for a conference championship again on Friday.”
Clinton and West Bladen, set for a 7:30 tip at Union High School.
Reach Adam Capps at 910-214-9585