The Fort Mill boys’ basketball team eked out a win in the first round of the 5A state playoffs 49-45 over defending 4A state champion the Byrnes Rebels Wednesday to advance in the postseason.
Fort Mill had its good and bad moments in the game, but was able to put it all together in the fourth quarter to get the win.
The Jackets’ defense was key in the early going for Fort Mill as they forced Byrnes into six first quarter turnovers, which helped them take a 16-12 lead after the opening quarter. Thomas Chrisley hit two 3-pointers in the opening period which also played a pivotal role for Fort Mill
In the second quarter, both teams’ offenses slowed to a crawl, as they combined for just nine points. Fort Mill hit just two of eight shots from the field in the quarter and didn’t go to the foul line, while Byrnes was 0-for-5 from the field, but went 3-for-6 from the foul line for the Rebs’only points in the quarter.
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While both teams struggled shooting the ball, Fort Mill was able to edge ahead at the half taking a 22-15 lead into the locker room. The Jackets’ only field goals in the second quarter came off 3-pointers from Austin Grainger and Ryan Heriot.
Both teams opened the second half with more of an offensive output, as they two started exchanging baskets. Keaton Griffin played well in the third quarter for Fort Mill and made his way to the basket on three occasions dropping in six points for the Jackets. Ryan DeLuca also sliced his way to the basket as the Rebels interior defense struggled at times in stopping Fort Mill.
However, the one thing that did hurt Fort Mill in the third quarter was the Jackets themselves as their poor ball handling played right into what Byrnes wanted.
Fort Mill’s offense in the fourth quarter was key as they outscored Byrnes 18-14 and was a perfect 7-7 from the foul line. Heriot scored seven of his 15 points in the fourth quarter and Rob McIntyre hit a key 3-pointer during the stretch to help the Jackets’ offense.
Byrnes tied the game at 31 entering the fourth quarter by ending the third quarter on a 10-0 run against Fort Mill. The Rebels’ run was aided by four turnovers from Fort Mill. From about midway through the third quarter, Fort Mill struggled to score as Byrnes was able to make a game of it.
Heriot led Fort Mill with 15 points and Griffin scored 10 points, all in the second half to lead the Jackets.
Fort Mill will now host Riverside at 7 p.m. Saturday at home in the second round of the 5A state playoffs.
Mac Banks: firstname.lastname@example.org, @MacBanksFM
Fort Mill 49, Byrnes 45
Fort Mill 16;6;9;18;-49
Byrnes – Hayden Brown 18, Dreek Morgan 7, Davonte Wright 7, Phillip Simpson 6, Jalen Miller 4, Treyvon Davis 3.
Fort Mill – Ryan Heriot 15, Keaton Griffin 10, Ryan DeLuca 6, Thomas Chrisley 6, Austin Grainger 5, Jamal White 4, Rob McIntyre 3.
3-pointers: Byrnes 2 (Simpson, Wright), Fort Mill 6 (Chrisley 2, Heriot 2, Grainger, McIntyre)
Team fouls: Byrnes 13, Fort Mill 14
Fouled out: None
Byrnes 12-11, Fort Mill 19-5.