Eagles Upset in Bi-District Game PDF  ICON_SEP Print ICON_SEP  E-mail
Written by Scott Batts   
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The Fairfield Eagles hit two free throws in the last thirty seconds in regulation to force overtime, but lost in the bi-district game to the Lorena Leopards 64-58 Tuesday night at Bremond High School.
The Eagles jumped out to a quick 6-0 lead on a driving layup by Jailyn Tatum.  He passed to June Rischer for a score and E.J. Ransom scored to build the lead.  Lorena answered with three three pointers, two by Garrett Goolsby and the score was tied for the first of seven times in the contest.
The offenses caught fire in the second period and each team scored 21 each and the score was still tied heading into the halftime break.  Tatum scored three times cutting through the Leopard defense and then kicked the ball out to Kolby Adams for a three pointer.  Inside scoring from Jase Oliver and Rischer put the Eagles ahead.  Lorena hit three more from long range and scored on the final four shots of the half, tying the score at 33-33.
Defense was the order in the first moments in the second half.  Adams hit a shot to take the lead but Ben Craig answered with a three and the Leopards took the lead.  Bryan Ash hit three of four free throws and Craig added a couple on a technical foul.  The Leopards took a 43-40 lead heading into the final eight minutes of regulation.
Ash hit a three to open the final period and Adams and Ransom added baskets to draw within four at 50-46 midway through the period.  Craig hit a pair of free throws to lead 54-50 and Tatum slashed through the Leopard defense to score and get the lead 54-52. Tatum returned to the free throw line and nailed a pair to tie the game at 54-54.  The Leopards missed a shot with .7 remaining in regulation and the Eagles could not score and the game went into overtime.
Tatum added a free throw early in the extra period and Goolsby answered from long distance and Lorena took the lead.  Ryan Siler scored on a short jumper and a couple of free throws.  The Eagles made a last gasp at the end and could not tie the score and Lorena closed the game and the Eagle season at the free throw line. 
Tatum scored 19 to lead the Eagle attack and Goolsby led the Leopards with 16.
The Fairfield Eagles were an exciting team to watch this season with a good showing at a couple of tournaments and a perfect district season among five very evenly matched teams.  It is a disappointing ending but the Eagles return quite a bit of talent for next season.
The Fairfield Eagles say good bye to three seniors: Akeem Jackson, E.J. Ransom and June Rischer.  We wish them the very best of luck as they all take their talents to the collegiate level.