Greenville trailed John Tyler most of the way, but held the lead when it counted most.
John Tyler missed three crucial free throws down the stretch and fell 62-60 to Greenville on Tuesday night at the Lions Den.
JT possessed the lead for 22 consecutive minutes before Greenville pulled even at 58 on Jerry Dickeson’s two foul shots.
After JT split a pair at the line, Dartannon Wilson (21 points, two steals, two blocks) hit three consecutive free throws on two different trips to the charity stripe to give Greenville a 61-59 edge with 1:25 showing, the Lions’ first time trailing since two minutes remained in the first period.
Keaunte Humber, who led JT with 18 points and 14 rebounds, settled for a split to be down by two, and Wilson answered with a split to make it 62-60 with two seconds remaining.
JT called one final timeout before inbouding from the far end. Greenville broke up JT’s attempt to get off a 3-point shot to end the comeback win.
“It was a tough loss,” JT coach Cedeno Clark said. “We thought it was a winnable game. It came down to us not being able to close out in the end.”
The Lions (2-9) hoped to get back on the winning track after a 59-point setback against state-ranked DeSoto.
William Vaughn scored six points in the final two minutes of the first half — off a traditional three-point play and on a 3-pointer — to help JT go into the break with a 30-24 lead. JT extended its lead to seven points on three different occasions in the third period.
The JT lead evaporated as the Lions failed to connect on six of 11 free throws in the final period. Greenville benefited from 14 second-chance points.
“That was an evenly-matched team (for us),” Clark said. “We’ve got to find ways to win and keep chomping at the bits.”
Greenville 62, John Tyler 60
Greenville 13 11 21 17—62
John Tyler 15 15 19 11—60
GREENVILLE — Collen Wilburn, 5; Jamar Clark, 4; Marlon Mark, 2; Darion Neal, 4; Dartannon Wilson, 21; Justin Wade, 4; Chris Bazor, 3; Brady Mulkey, 4; Jerry Dickeson, 15. FG: 22-53 FT: 14-20.
JOHN TYLER — Jordan Caldwell, 8; Patrick Williams, 3; Keaunte Humber, 18; Javonte Tramble, 5; Jacob Owens-Bush, 4; William Vaughn, 7; J’Michael Jasper, 4; Hennessey Lampkin, 11. FG: 23-52 FT: 11-21.
Three Point Goals-G: 4-12 (Wilson 2, Bazor, Dickerson), JT 3-18 (Humber, Williams, Vaughn). Rebounds-G: 40 (Clark 7), JT 34 (Humber 14). Assists-G: 5 (Neal 3), JT 6 (Caldwell, Lampkin, Thomas 2). Total fouls-G: 15, JT 17.
RECORDS — Greenville 7-8; John Tyler 2-9.
NEXT UP — John Tyler at Terrell, Friday.