Wheatley's run ends in state semis

March 6, 2008 9:20:10 PM PST
Fort Worth Southwest and Houston Wheatley didn't just play basketball, they turned the game into a track meet full of 94-foot dashes. By the time it was over, everyone was catching their breath and Southwest walked off the court with a wild 95-89 win Thursday night in the Class 4A state semifinals.

Kendall Timmons scored 34 points and grabbed 11 rebounds to lead Southwest (31-6). His two free throws tied the game at 87-87 and he scored nine of his team's final 10 points in the final 1:10.

Fort Worth Southwest tied the Class 4A tournament record for most points in a game, matching Dallas South Oak Cliff's and Fort Worth Dunbar's totals in the 2006 semifinals. Southwest and Wheatley combined to take 170 shots, put up 52 3-pointers and committed 46 turnovers.

Duane Kinney added 17 points for Southwest. De Shun Garrett and John Boutte each scored 18 to lead Wheatley (29-6).

Southwest, which averages 97 points and scored 141 in its season opener, roared to a 27-20 lead after one quarter and led 49-43 at halftime. Both teams played at a wild, frenetic pace full of fast breaks and pressure defense that led to turnovers and even more baskets in transition. Both teams substituted in waves to keep fresh legs on the floor. In all, 19 players scored in the game.

Dominique Jones hit four 3-pointers in the first half and another that would have pushed Southwest over the 50-point mark in the half rattled in and out of the rim in the finals seconds.

The scoring really couldn't stay at that pace, could it?

Yep.

Wheatley, which got to the tournament with a similar high-octane attack, occasionally tried to slow things down in a halfcourt offense. Those moments, however, were few and far between and both teams raced up and down the court.

An 8-0 run by Wheatley tied it at 51-51 before Southwest's Derrick McDowell hit the Raiders' seventh 3-pointer. At the end of the third, Southwest led 70-68 on Timmons' driving layup at the buzzer.

All that offense finally started sputtering in the fourth, not because the pace was slower, but because the shots stopped falling in as both teams started throwing up wild attempts and kicked the ball around the court with turnovers.

Ironically, Timmons finally put the game away while standing still, making 7 of 8 free throws down the stretch.

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