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Highland Tech Rams handle Knights 64-40

North Lincoln’s Brandon Edwards goes up to block a shot by Highland Tech’s Jevon Patton on Tuesday.

MICHAEL GEBELEIN
Sports Writer

PUMPKIN CENTER — The Highland Tech Rams completed a three-game sweep of the North Lincoln Knights with Tuesday’s 64-40 Southern Piedmont Conference tournament semifinal win, and now move onto the championship game against Lincolnton on Friday.
Highland Tech’s Kameron Harper hit seven three-pointers to pace the Rams with 25 points.
“We just did a poor job closing out on shooters, we had our hands down,” North Lincoln head coach Eric King said. “We talked before the game about who the key shooters were, but we allowed them open looks and they knocked them down. We just didn’t play well enough to beat a team like that. We didn’t work hard enough on defense to stay in the game and we let that carry over into our offense. There was no flow on offense at all.”
North Lincoln played close with the Rams in the teams’ second meeting during the regular season, getting edged out by a three-point shot at the buzzer on Jan. 24.
The Knights finished off the first quarter with a 5-0 run to go down 10-9 after the opening minutes. Cameron Varberg hit his lone field goal of the night moments into the second quarter on a put-back to put the Knights ahead 12-11, but back-to-back-to-back three-pointers by Harper lifted the Rams to a 20-15 lead. Jevon Patton added back-to-back three-pointers of his own with 20 seconds left in the first half to give the Rams a 26-15 lead.
The Knights scored 15 points in the third quarter, but the Rams put 24 on the board. A three-pointer by Christian Ramos with 6:20 left in the third brought the Knights within 11, but the Rams followed that score up with a 7-0 run to take a 38-21 lead.
The Rams pulled ahead further in the fourth quarter, outscoring the Knights 14-10.
Gray Brotherton led the Knights in scoring with 17 points. Brotherton was 4-7 from two-point range and 1-5 from three-point range and hit six of seven free throw attempts. Brotherton and Cohen Pirtle both had five rebounds.

Gray Brotherton drives in for a layup against Highland Tech on Tuesday.

Images courtesy of Ray Gora / LTN

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