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Thursday, Apr. 28, 2016

Dogs finally have their day

Wednesday, March 5, 2008

It took them six years, but the Delight Bulldogs finally had their day against the Viola Longhorns.

And in a rematch of the 2002 state championship game, a game which the Horns won, Delight came out on top 46-42 Feb. 27 at Pioneer Pavilion in Harrison, in the opening round of the Class 1A State Tournament.

And the free throw line was the difference in this contest.

Delight (28-10) struggled mightily from the charity stripe, missing all but seven of the 15 free throws they attempted, but the ones that did fall were huge ones for the Bulldogs.

In the last two minutes of the game, Delight's Chris Kizer went four-for-four from the stripe and the Bulldogs hit six of their seven free throws during that time frame to seal the win.

The Bulldogs took a 12-9 lead after the first period of play, using an 8-2 run to pull in front.

Viola (21-11), making its ninth appearance in the state tournament in the last 11 years, got three big free throws from Austin Springfield (16 points) to take a 20-19 lead late in the second period.

But the Bulldogs had the last say in the first half as Kizer hit a 3-pointer that beat the halftime buzzer and gave Delight a 24-20 lead at intermission.

Fueled by a four-point burst to start the third, Delight extended its lead to 28-20, but Viola roared back and a 3-ball by Jesse Shrable capped a 7-0 spurt for the Horns, pulling them within one of the Bulldogs.

But the see-saw tipped Delight's way late in the third, with the Bulldogs hitting Viola with a 10-2 run to pull in front 38-31 after three.

The Bulldogs recorded just one field goal in the final eight minutes of play, and despite some shaky free throw shooting, still found a way to prevail.

Kizer did knock down two from the free throw line with a shade over a minutes left to put Delight up 43-38.

Kasey Humphries (12 points) was hacked launching a 3-point attempt and went to the stripe and hit two free throws that narrowed Delight's lead to 43-40.

Delight managed to make things interesting by hitting just one of four free throw tries in the waning seconds, giving Viola hope.

Humphries again pulled the Longhorns closer, down 44-42, by canning two free throws with 13 ticks showing.

But Kizer struck again, sending in two straight free throws to end the night with Delight winning by four, 46-42.

Lucas Rains finished with nine points for Viola, while Marlin Coggins added two.

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