Bulloch Academy blew a 13-point, fourth-quarter lead to lose to Dominion Christian 60-53 in overtime Saturday.
The Gators (5-7) held a 42-31 advantage at the end of the third quarter. Bulloch had played a masterful 24 minutes against the Marietta school, clicking on all cylinders on both offense and defense.
Senior Bill Sheppard gave the Gators the 13-point advantage when he fought for an offensive rebound and pushed it back up for a bucket with 7:10 left in the game for a 44-31 lead. Sheppard led BA with 17 points.
Dominion (5-5) mounted its comeback with a more concentrated effort on defense and rebounding. The strategy worked as the Knights rattled the Gators, forcing bad passes and player decisions. Still, Bulloch held a nine-point lead, 46-35, when junior Smith Reeves drove the lane for a layup with 4:30 remaining. Reeves had 13 on the night.
DC stuck to its plan and continued to whittle away at the lead. The Gators were frustrated by the Knights’ tight defense and renewed rebounding prowess. On the other end of the floor, Dominion’s offense spread out the Gator man, giving DC better scoring opportunities.
The Knights were down by just six with 3:10 left to play. Levi Lewallen cut the advantage to three, 47-44, when he netted an old-fashioned three-point play with 2:40 left. A foul shot left the margin at a bucket at the 2:05 mark and Lewallen’s layup with 1:24 tied the score at 47-47.
Jordan Dorsey’s drive with 1:04 left gave the Knights a 49-47 lead. Dorsey, who led all scorers with 29 points, drove the Dominion comeback. He got hot in the second half, scoring 14 in regulation.
Bulloch was able to regain some composure in the last minute. Sheppard and junior Will Marsh hit foul shots with under 50 seconds remaining to knot the score at 49.
In overtime, Dominion’s Dorsey and Tate Cooney drilled back-to-back three-pointers to give the Knights a quick six-point lead, 55-49.BA’s Ja’Darius Smith answered back with his own trey with 1:47 left in the extra period for a 55-52 score.
But the momentum was with the visitors as they outscored BA 5-2 down the stretch for the win.
Bulloch will be back in action Tuesday, hosting Frederica Academy.