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Warriors rally in second half to beat Tigers

Nansemond River’s boys basketball team doubled its scoring in the second half Tuesday evening to beat Oscar Smith 67-65.

Oscar Smith edged the Warriors in Chesapeake earlier this season and in the contest at NR, the Warriors trailed the entire first half and much of the third quarter. After the young Warriors gained the lead late in the game, they held it throughout the fourth period.

Fueled by Brian Clarke’s 22 points, the Warriors took the lead with 0:20 remaining in the third quarter on Shannon Evans’ three-point field goal.

The Warriors had been chipping away at the Tigers’ double-digit lead the entire quarter. After five straight points from Akeem Hadak put the Tigers up 37-26 to start the second half, Nansemond River made a run late in the third.

A Kerrington Harris three made the score 42-35 OS with 3:10 to play in the quarter, and two free throws from Morris Johnson cut the lead again to 42-37. Harris had another strong outing off of the bench with 15 points.

Harris knocked down another three pointer with 1:44 to play to cut the Oscar Smith lead to four, 44-40.

Ashton Moore, who’s been struggling for the Warriors after being the leading scorer through the first half of the season, scored on an offensive rebound to cut the lead to two, 44-42.

That’s when Evan’s three with 0:20 left in the quarter gave NR the lead for good.

The Warriors went ahead by four on a layup from Clarke midway through the fourth to take a 57-53 lead.

Johnson made one free throw on the next Warrior possession and he followed that with a layup to give NR a 60-55 lead with 2:30 to play.

A layup by Moore seemingly sealed the game, making NR’s lead 64-58 with 1:15 left, but the Tigers didn’t quit.

A floater from Dejuan Wright followed by a steal and a layup from Hadak cut the Warrior lead to just two with 0:25 to play.

OS quickly fouled Clarke on a Warrior inbound pass, and Clarke made both free throws to give his team a 66-62 lead.

Alonzo Holmes, who seemingly made shots whenever the Tigers needed them all night, hit a three-pointer with 0:09 remaining, to cut the Warrior lead to one.

The Tigers again fouled Clarke on the Warriors’ inbound, and he made one of two free throws, but Wright missed on the potential tying shot for the Tigers and the Warriors had hung on for the district win.

The victory gives the Warriors (10-6, 8-4) four straight wins and six wins out of their last seven contests.

Nansemond River visits city rival King’s Fork Thursday for a 7:30 p.m. start. The Bulldogs (14-2, 12-0) beat the Warriors 78-67 on Dec. 15 in what’s been the closest district win for King’s Fork this season.