Lately, Academics Plus has kept up Coach Harrison’s stress level with its exciting games.
The Falcons (10-11, 4-6 1A-5) won two games last week by one point and two points, respectively. A 65-64 victory over Lisa Academy West last Tuesday was a comeback after trailing by as many as 24 points. Last Friday, the Falcons defeated Conway Christian, 57-55.
"It was a great comeback, and I was stunned," Harrison said. "I asked (Will) Westenburger (sophomore guard) on the way to the locker room what happened. He said we tried to make it fun."
Harrison said Academics Plus could not have played any worse than it did in the first half and halfway through the third period. The Falcons tried by 24 points at the three-minute mark of the third quarter but ended the stanza with an 8-0 run. In the fourth quarter, the Falcons’ press started working. Senior guard Raylon Lynch tallied 14 of his team-leading 24 points in the fourth quarter. Westenburger added 12 points, and Paul Sheesley finished with 11.
"We created so many turnovers, and he either drew a foul or made a layup," Harrison said. "Lisa West completely dominated us for three and a half quarters. I challenged our guys, and they responded."
Sandwiched between the two triumphs was a conference loss to Wonderview last Thursday. In the 71-52 setback, Sheesley and Lynch got into foul trouble and their playing time was limited. Additionally, Wonderview with a 17-5 overall mark and an 11-1 conference mark is one of the best teams in the conference. Westenburger paced Academics Plus with 12 points, and Jawon Wright added 11.
"We didn’t play well, and the guys all knew we were in trouble when Paul and Raylon picked up their third fouls," Harrison said. "Their kids can really shoot and have great sets. If you get down, you are not going to come back and beat them."
Conway Christian dominated the Falcons in the paint and notched 53 of its points under the basket. Because Academics Plus couldn’t stop the Eagles, the Falcons went to four-corner delay with an eight-point margin in the fourth quarter. The Eagles tied the contest at 55 with four seconds left but had to foul. Westerburger nailed two free throws to seal the victory. Lynch finished with 20 points, and Westenburger contributed 12.
Last night, the Falcons traveled to Nemo Vista and host Sacred Heart on Friday. In the first meetings, Academics Plus beat Nemo, 51-40 and lost a close game, 63-59, to Sacred Heart.