Jacob Howard’s short baseline jumper with six seconds to play lifted the Montcalm Generals to a 58-57 win over the River View Raiders, Friday night at MHS. Howard’s game-winning shot came just seconds after River View’s Taylor Dehaven made a free throw to break a 56-all tie and put the visitors ahead by a point with 15.2 ticks showing on the clock.
“It was a great high school basketball game and that (River View) is a well-coached team and they played every bit as well as we did,” commented Montcalm head coach Matt Smith following the game.
River View struck first on a bucket and a three by Dehaven to take a 5-2 lead. But early foul trouble got to the Raiders as starters Tyree Baker and T.J. Stacy both sat about two minutes into the game, each with a pair of fouls.
The 6-foot-5 Howard took over for the Generals as he scored nine straight points for Montcalm, giving the home team a 13-5 lead. Jordan Wilson came off the River View bench to score four and after one quarter Montcalm held a 15-11 lead.
The pace slowed in the second period as foul trouble again plagued both teams. Tyree Baker both sat with his third personal foul, while Stacy’s three with 15 seconds to go in the half pulled the Raiders to within four. Both teams scored eight points in the quarter, but the Montcalm defense held River View scoreless the first five minutes of the period.
Eleven of Montcalm’s 23 first half points came from Howard, while Dehaven accounted for 10 of River View’s 19.
The Raiders came out smoking in the second half. Two consecutive steals by Jordan Wilson and baskets by Dehaven knotted the game at 23 only 30 seconds into the third quarter. From there the lead would go back and forth with neither team leading by more than four.
Montcalm received a blow when Howard picked up his second and third fouls in a matter of 10 seconds and took a seat. The Generals, however got good defensive play, led by Dustin Williams and Tyler Goins hit three free throws and a three to keep the Generals close.
River View countered with buckets from Dehaven and a pair from Joseph McClanahan, including a three to remain with reach. Montcalm led 40-37 as the teams took the court for the final eight minutes of play.
Joshua Hamblin made three straight baskets for Montcalm, but threes by Jimmy Baker and McClanahan gave the Raiders the lead on separate occasions.
With the game tied at 52 with 1:54 to go, Cameron Roberts made one of two free throws to give the Raiders a one point lead. Hamblin’s two charity tosses with 1:44 left put Montcalm back on top.
Getting the ball after a turnover, the Generals ran nearly 45 seconds off the clock before the Raiders grabbed a rebound and called time. Pushing the ball down court Jimmy Baker drained a three from the right baseline with 36 seconds left to five River View a 56-54 advantage.
The Generals responded. Jacob Lambert was fouled with 26.0 on the clock and sank both free throws to draw Montcalm even at 56.
With 15.2 remaining, Howard picked up his fifth foul, sending Dehaven to the line where the Raider made the second of two shots, putting River View back ahead 57-56.
Montcalm pushed the ball up court dropped it down low on the right baseline to Howard who hit a jumper from about eight feet out with six ticks on the clock. The Raiders inbounded the ball, but a final shot came up short and Montcalm grabbed a season-opening victory.
“It was just heartbreaking,” said River View head coach Roger Hale. “I can’t say much more than it was a heartbreaker. I’m lost for words. It was a heartbreaker.”
Howard led Montcalm with 17 points and grabbed four rebounds. Hamblin tallied 12 with seven boards and Lambert tossed in 11. Williams had four rebounds and Tyler Goins dished out five assists.
“If it were not for the way Jacob Howard played on the boards and early in the game offensively, we would have been run out of the gym,” Smith said. “Joshua (Hamblin), for the two years I’ve been here, I’ve known Josh is capable of it. He has just lacked the confidence. They both came up huge and we are very fortunate to get out with a win.”
River View was led by Dehaven with 15. Jimmy Baker came of the bench to score 11, including three treys.
“Jimmy Baker played excellent,” Hale said. “We just missed too many free throws. I ain’t going to blame it on anything but we missed too many free throws. We shot ourselves in the foot with free throws.”
River View connected on only four-of-10 from the free throw line in the contest.
Montcalm is now 1-0 and travels to Van on Tuesday, plays a make-up game at Sherman on Wednesday and hosts Man next Friday.
River View drops to 1-1 and will visit Pike Central, Ky., Tuesday.
RIVER VIEW (1-1)
Todd Coeburn 0 0-0 0, Joseph McClanahan 3 0-0 8, Tyree Baker 2 2-2 7, Taylor Dehaven 6 1-6 15, Jordan Wilson 3 0-0 6, T.J. Stacy 2 0-0 5, Cameron Roberts 2 1-2 5, Demetrius Duff 0 0-0 0, Jimmy Baker 4 0-0 11, Totals 22 4-10 57.
Jacob Lambert 3 5-6 11, Tyler Goins 2 3-5 8, Travis Poynter 0 0-0 0, Travis Duncan 2 4-7 8, Dustin Williams 1 0-0 2, Joshua Hamblin 5 2-3 12, Jacob Howard 8 1-1 17, Zack Coeburn 0 0-0 0, Totals 21 15-22 58.
River View.......................11 8 18 20 — 57
Montcalm........................15 8 17 18 — 58
3 point goals: RV - 9 (McClanahan 2, T. Baker 1, Dehaven 2, Stacy 1, J. Baker 3); MON - 1 (Goins). Fouled out: RV - T. Baker; MON - Howard. Technical fouls: None.