The Transylvania Times -

Ten Years In The Making – Blue Devils Defeat Mustangs

 

Last updated 1/29/2020 at 4:42pm

Keishon Couch (No. 3) and Baxter Swicegood (No. 15) celebrate after Brevard came from behind to defeat Smoky Mountain, 45-40, for the first time in 10 years on Tuesday night. (Times photo by Jeremiah Reed)

The going got tough, but Brevard kept going.

After trailing by seven points at halftime, the Blue Devils fought their way back in the second half to claim a 45-40 victory over the Smoky Mountain Mustangs for the first time in 10 years.

It was a nip-and-tuck affair, as the two sides were separated by only one possession over most of the final two quarters.

But Brevard came up big down the stretch, getting some key defensive stops and sinking clutch free throws to earn the win.

It was a slow start for both teams, as Brevard led 10-6 after the first quarter.

The Blue Devils led 12-10 in the second quarter when the Mustangs came alive, going on a 8-0 run thanks to a pair of 3-pointers to move in front 18-12 with under 4:00 to go in the first half.

A baseline jumper from Drew Scott cut the lead to 18-17, but Smoky went on another run, scoring six straight points to take a 24-17 lead into the locker room at halftime.

However, the Blue Devils picked up their offensive efficiency in the third quarter, cutting into the lead bit by bit.

Baxter Swicegood got hot from the floor, knocking down a pair of jumpers before adding a layup that tied the game at 28 with 2:00 to go in the quarter.

As the game entered the final eight minutes, Smoky clung to a 31-30 lead.

Scott opened the fourth quarter with a bucket to give Brevard their first lead of the second half at 32-31.

But the Mustangs scored four straight points to move back in front at 35-32 with just over 5:00 left to play.

Keishon Couch answered with a big 3-pointer to tie things up at 35.

However, Smoky crept back in front, 38-35, before a jumper from Scott made it 38-37.

A bucket inside from Joe Powell put the Blue Devils up 39-38, but Smoky scored off a turnover on the next possession to retake the lead at 40-39 with 1:45 left.

As the clock wound down under 1:00, Laz Hunter stepped to the line for a 1-and-1. The junior sank both shots, giving Brevard a 41-40 lead.

The Blue Devil defense got a stop on the next possession, putting Couch at the line for another 1-and-1. Like Hunter, he knocked down both free throws to make it 43-40 with 24 seconds to go.

Smoky didn't do much with their final possession, launching a 3-pointer from the corner with under 10 seconds that came up empty.

Couch stepped to the free throw line one last time, calmly knocking down both shots to ice the victory.

The win improves Brevard's record to 8-9 overall and 3-3 in the Mountain Six Conference.

The Blue Devils return to the court on Friday, as they host Franklin.

 
 

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