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STEM — Granville Central’s senior night didn’t go as planned after the Louisburg Warriors pulled out a 73-70 win in overtime against the Panthers.
Jamari Mann started the night on fire for the Panthers. He connected on a 3-pointer and then drove into the paint for a layup.
Ethan Wood and Elijah Jamison answered on the other end for Louisburg.
Wood and Jamison gave the Warriors an 11-5 lead with back-to-back baskets. Granville Central needed to score and Terence Harcum picked up his dribble at the top of the key and fired a 3-pointer that barely moved the net.
Seconds later, Harcum stole the ball and rolled in for a dunk.
Wood drilled another triple for the Warriors to stretch the lead to 14-10. Mann drove to the basket and powered his way up for a layup and on the next trip down the court he dipped low and blasted forward to the rim for a dunk that tied the game at 14-all.
Jamison kept firing away under the basket to give Louisburg the lead back.
JJ Tilley saw Seth Wade breaking toward the basket. Tilley threaded the needle with the ball and Wade sewed up the basket for the Panthers. Jordan Durham’s triple gave Louisburg a 19-16 lead at the end of the first quarter.
Khylil Carter scored and made the plus-one for Louisburg to extend the lead to 22-16.
Granville Central would not back down as Mann and Ihzayah Marcellus scored to trim the Louisburg lead to a single point.
Wood made another 3-pointer and Jamison knocked down a pair from the line to give Louisburg a 27-21 lead.
Mann used a drop-step to shake the Louisburg defender and then he stepped back for a triple from well beyond the arc. Harcum made one of two free throws to cut into the Warriors lead.
Jamison hit a bucket just before the half to give Louisburg a 30-25 lead.
Granville Central opened the third quarter with Mann and Harcum shooting 2-pointers. Jamison answered with a deuce of his own to keep Louisburg in the lead.
Mann toed the line for a couple of free throws to pull the Panthers to within one at 32-31. Brenton Bullock’s 3-pointer gave Louisburg a little cushion.
Mann made another basket for the Panthers, but Jamison scored the next five points for Louisburg. The Warriors lead 40-33 midway through the third quarter. Jamison and Mann traded baskets and Marcus Portis scored to give Louisburg a 44-37 lead heading into the fourth quarter.
The final quarter of regulation began with both teams heading to the free-throw line. Louisburg stretched the lead to eight points with Jamison making a pair from the stripe.
Marcellus hit a huge 3-pointer from the right side to slow the Warriors. Mann drove the lane for a layup and the Panthers started to claw their way back into the game.
Jamison wanted nothing to do with the comeback as he hit one of two free throws and followed with a rebound and put back.
Harcum responded by canning a pair from the free-throw line. Tyler Coley and Wade worked the high-low play to perfection. Coley saw Wade had a window and fired the ball to him. Wade made the basket to pull the Panthers to within five points.
Jamison made the old-fashioned 3 look easy as he gave Louisburg a 55-47 lead.
Bullock and Jamison pushed the lead to 59-48 after Mann made one of two free throws.
Time was not on Granville Central’s side, but Mann found a way to get fouled on the way to the basket. He made the pair to trim the Louisburg lead to eight.
Bullock had the opportunity to extend the lead, but faltered at the free-throw line. That opened the door for Harcum and Mann to go to work. The duo trimmed the lead to 63-61, but Jamison bumped it back to three with a free throw.
Harcum connected on a 3-pointer to tie the game at 64, but Louisburg would have the last shot.
Portis caught the ball on the baseline, took one step and released the ball. The ball went in, but was waved off as Coley drew the charge.
The game headed to overtime with Marcellus giving the Panthers a 66-64 lead.
Jamison took two trips to the free-throw line for the Warriors and he made all four attempts to give Louisburg a brief lead.
Harcum drove down the lane and flipped the ball up for the basket to tie the score at 68-all.
Portis side-stepped the Granville Central defense and made a basket and Jamison made one of two free throws to give Louisburg a 71-68 lead.
Mann caught the ball in the corner and ball-faked the long shot enough to get the defender off his feet. Mann drove to the basket for a dunk.
Trailing 71-70, the Panthers had to foul and hope Louisburg missed free throws. Durham and Jamison each made one of two from the line.
The Panthers could not connect with the final shot and Louisburg captured the overtime win.
Granville Central moved to 16-5 overall and 8-2 in conference play.
The Panthers will travel to South Granville on Feb. 14.
Unofficial statistics: Jamari Mann (38 points), Ihzayah Marcellus (eight points), Terence Harcum (20 points) and Seth Wade (four points).
Louisburg: Elijah Jamison (42 points), Turan Alston (two points), Jordan Durham (four points), Brenton Bullock (six points), Ethan Wood (12 points), Khylil Carter (three points) and Marcus Portis (four points).