The Times West Virginian


January 16, 2014

No. 8 FSHS runs out of miracles, falls to No. 1 RCB in triple-OT: PHOTOS

FAIRMONT — Tavon Horton sat with his legs outstretched on the bleachers at the Woody Williams Armory, exhausted.

A trainer wrapped his right calf with a bag of ice, while the junior guard entertained questions about his 17-point performance, his clutch 3-pointer to send the game into double overtime and the cramps he fought through into the third overtime period.

Suddenly, mid-answer, he stopped and signaled for the trainer who was walking away.

“This one too,” he said, pointing to his other leg.

It was that kind of game Wednesday night.

Multiple key players fouled out. Three times the game appeared over. Muscles cramped and failed. But the heart kept beating for No. 8 Fairmont Senior all the way through three thrilling overtime periods with No. 1 Robert C. Byrd.

But ultimately, it wasn’t enough.

The Eagles escaped with a 74-71 victory in a game that wasn’t decided until the very last possession.

“We made a statement,” said Horton about the Polar Bears’ performance against the state’s top-ranked team. “We lack in experience, but we’re still mentally tough.”

The Polar Bears (4-4, 3-2 Big 10) appeared to be beaten with time winding down in regulation. Robert C. Byrd (9-0, 7-0 Big 10) led 52-50 in the final seconds of the fourth quarter and needed to do little more than inbound the ball. But Fairmont Senior guard Darhius Nunn stole the pass and took it for a layup to send the game into overtime.

In overtime, the Eagles led with time winding down again. This time Horton played the hero. He had cramps that were so severe that he had to limp to the free-throw line at one point.

“My foot was stuck,” he said afterward.

But with an RCB defender draped all over him, Horton hit a 3-pointer with just 1.7 second remaining to send the game into double overtime.

“We just needed a 3,” he said. “It wasn't there, but it was there. I just shot it and hoped it went in."

Again in the second overtime, Fairmont Senior trailed in the final minute. This time Michael Holloway collected a rebound and put it back to tie the game at 69.

“It was a great game. Neither team wanted to lose,” said Robert C. Byrd coach Bill Bennett. “I told our kids before the game that these guys are young enough and inexperienced enough to come out here and not care about who you are.”

Finally in the third overtime the Polar Bears ran out of magic. Flying Eagles’ guard Cameron Carvelli hit two free throws in the final minutes and the Polar Bears’ final heave fell short.

“When you look at a triple-overtime game, there’s a play we didn't make on defense; there’s a play we didn't make on offense. That’s the game,” Fairmont Senior coach David Retton said. “(I think about) if I made a different call or if I made a different substitution. The margin of error is that close in a game like this.”

Five Polar Bears finished the game in double figures. In addition to Horton’s 17, Nunn put up 15, Isaac Childers scored 13, Blake Cehajic dropped 12 and Holloway finished with 10.

Robert C. Byrd, meanwhile, was led by 6-foot-5, 240-pound Justin Noble, who had 24 points and 17 rebounds. Cameron Carvelli (14 points), Devonti Birch (14) and Kevin Steele (10) also posted double figures.

Fairmont Senior will rest the tired muscles for a few days before facing Elkins.

“Can we use this game to improve our basketball team? Absolutely,” Retton said. “We weren't satisfied with the outcome, but at the same time we have made a lot of strides.”

“We've got to move forward quickly,” he continued. “Lets use this game to make strides and get ready for Elkins.”

Email Mike DeFabo at or follow him on Twitter @MikeDeFaboTWV.

Text Only
  • Balance key to preventing youth sports burnout

    Unless you’ve just won a NASCAR race, burning out is not a good thing.
    All too often it seems that athletes are being pushed to a highly competitive level at a younger age each and every year.
    Studies from the American Medical Society for Sports Medicine have shown that an estimated 27 million youth in the United States between the ages of 6 and 18 play team sports; 60 million play at least one sport and 44 million play multiple sports.

    July 13, 2014

  • Howes learns to ‘never settle’ as WVU administrator

    You probably don’t know much about Terri Howes, even though she is a rather high-ranking executive in the West Virginia University athletic department.
    “I like it that way,” she said, sitting in a large office at the Coliseum, decorated with pictures and memorabilia, a jar of candy sitting by the door for visitors to dip into.

    July 13, 2014

  • HERTZEL COLUMN: Rich Rod’s return not impossible

    As you may guess, in the wake of LeBron James’ decision to let bygones be millions and return to his rooters in Cleveland, more than once was I approached with someone wanting to know if this opened the door for a return to West Virginia University of their once-reviled coach Rich Rodriguez.

    July 13, 2014

  • McCutchen’s HRs rally Pirates over Reds 6-5 in 11

    The Pirates’ MVP saved them. Twice.
    Andrew McCutchen tied the game with a solo homer in the ninth inning Saturday night, then connected again in the 11th inning, rallying the struggling Pittsburgh Pirates to a 6-5 victory over the Cincinnati Reds.

    July 13, 2014

  • JUST IN: Netherlands beats host Brazil 3-0 to finish 3rd

    Robin van Persie and Daley Blind scored early goals to help give the Netherlands a 3-0 win over host Brazil in the third-place match at the World Cup on Saturday.

    July 12, 2014

  • COLUMN: Could pressure of positive image outweigh rings?

    The faith of the Cleveland Cavaliers’ fan base has been restored and so, too, has the respect for LeBron James — putting him back in the positive spotlight for the time being.
    Could it be possible that the pressure of being back in that positive limelight outweighs the need for championship rings?

    July 12, 2014

  • Bees’ OL poised to lead team in right direction

    Getting your team out of a funk can sometimes be a daunting task.
    For East Fairmont’s football team, it may seem that overcoming a 3-7 season could be a hard-fought battle. But don’t tell the offensive line that.
    “We just want to set a standard,” senior offensive lineman Jacob Brown said.

    July 12, 2014

  • One step closer to dream, Kesling signs with Garrett

    Getting where you want to be is a process. Fairmont Senior’s Johnny Kesling knows that.
    For Kesling, the next step in reaching the ranks of Division I baseball is to fine tune his skills.
    Kesling took that step Friday, signing to play baseball with Garrett County Community College, a junior college in Maryland.

    July 12, 2014

  • Pirates fall to Reds after late rally

    Brayan Pena’s pinch-hit single in the eighth inning completed another late rally by the Reds, who overcame more injuries on Friday and beat the Pittsburgh Pirates 6-5 to keep their momentum going toward the All-Star break.

    July 12, 2014

  • Twins brew up self-serve beer for All Star Game

     It’s BYOB at the home of the Minnesota Twins for this week’s All Star Game.

    July 11, 2014

Featured Ads
NDN Sports
House Ads
NCAA Breaking News
NCAA Photos