The Spring Playoffs for the Masters League got underway on Tuesday. Four games were played, and while six teams started the night, only two remain to fight for the league championship. All four games were entertaining. Here’s who came out on top.
#3 Kryptonite (63) vs. #6 Shooters Tour (55)
Three teams finished the regular season at 6-1, but after tiebreakers, Kryptonite took the #3 seed, facing Shooters Tour in the first round. Despite being the underdogs, Shooters Tour was outhustling Kryptonite for most of the game, getting loads of offensive rebounds and second-chance opportunities. Justin McKinney was a force on the glass early, and Shooters Tour led 17-16 after the 1st quarter.
McKinney was the leading scorer for Shooters Tour with 16 points. Also in double-figures was Alan Puckett with 13 and Scott Reed with 11.
Kryptonite responded well, though, and took a 7-point lead by halftime and increased it to 10 entering the 4th quarter. Sammy Veal had 23 points and 6 rebounds, while Corvest Thompson had 22 and 8. In the 4th quarter, Shooters Tour kept it close but was unable to hit big shots down the stretch, falling 63-55 despite trying to play the foul game.
#5 4 Bricks & A Swish (65) vs. #4 Bombers (63) (OT)
In the other game of the first round, the Bombers took on 4 Bricks & A Swish. Both teams started out cold from the field, but it was Patrick Cofield who got things going for 4 Bricks & A Swish, hitting a couple threes in the 1st quarter, building a 20-10 lead. The lead only grew in the 2nd quarter, with 4 Bricks taking a 33-17 lead into halftime.
Cofield had 20 points and 8 rebounds in the game for 4 Bricks, who also had big contributions from Zac Majors and Artis Bishop. Majors had 15 points, 6 rebounds, and 4 assists, and Bishop had 14, 8, and 4.
The game looked like a blowout, with 4 Bricks leading by as many as about 20 points in the 3rd quarter. However, in the final period, the Bombers had the comeback of the season, scoring 30 points, and knocking down three after three. Tied in the final minute, Zac Majors hit a three to take a 3-point lead, but the Bombers responded in the final seconds to send it into overtime 62-62.
In overtime, both teams hit a free throw to tie it at 63. 4 Bricks & A Swish had the last possession, and as the buzzer sounded, Artis Bishop hit a mid-range shot off an offensive rebound to win the game.
#2 9 Round (72) vs. Kryptonite (70)
In the semifinals, Kryptonite played their second game of the night against 9 Round for a spot in the championship. There was a scary moment early in the game for 9 Round when Jason O’Bryant appeared to be injured, but he bounced back to lead all scorers in the game with 26. O’Bryant and Eddy Barlow, who had 25, carried the scoring load for 9 Round. Randy Lyles added 11 points, 8 rebounds, and 6 assists. Marcelles Howard contributed 8 points and 12 boards.
Similarly, Kryponite was led by two main scorers. Corvest Thompson and Robert Suber each had 23 points. Thompson had 12 rebounds, while Suber had 9. Although not his best shooting game, Sammy Veal came close to a quadruple-double, finishing with 15 points, 8 rebounds, 10 assists, and 6 steals.
Kryptonite held up strong in their second game, leading by 7 at halftime. However, 9 Round put together a run to take the lead in the middle of the 4th quarter and held on in a close one, 72-70.
#1 B2F Lions (72) vs. #5 4 Bricks & A Swish (60)
The final game saw the return of 4 Bricks & A Swish against #1 seed B2F Lions. Like the majority of the night’s games, it was close early. 4 Bricks led by a point after the first quarter. However, a big second quarter from B2F Lions gave them a 9-point halftime lead. 4 Bricks hit 10 threes in the game, many of them to keep the team within striking distance, but they were never able to get it to a one-possession game.
For B2F Lions, John Lolio and Damien Harris had a nearly identical scoreline. Lolio scored 16 points to go with 8 rebounds and 3 assists. Harris had the same, except for an extra ninth rebound. Mike Gonzalez added 13 points.
Zac Majors led 4 Bricks with 18 points and a perfect 8/8 from the free throw line. Artis Bishop had 16 points and 8 rebounds, and Patrick Cofield hit four threes. Still, B2F Lions came out on top, 72-60.
The B2F Lions and 9 Round will play for the Spring Championship Tuesday, June 26 at 8pm at the CK Ray Rec Center. But first, the All-Star Game will take place at 6:30 featuring many of the top players from around the league. You won’t want to miss either game!