Purple Eagles late surge nips Raiders

By Mike Wertman, Sports Writer Posted 17 January 2018 at 10:22 pm

Photos by Cheryl Wertman – Albion’s Deyonci Farley puts up a shot against Barker defender Preston Harris during the host Purple Eagles win over the Raiders this evening.

Putting together a late scoring burst, Albion edged past visiting Barker 68-65 this evening in a Niagara-Orleans League make-up game.

Trailing by eight, 63-55, with three minutes remaining, Albion came rallying back with a clutch 13-2 scoring surge to close the game and claim the narrow win.

Two free throws by Deyonci Farley followed by one layup by Liam Ward and two by Bryce Pritchard ignited the rally and pulled Albion even at 63-63 with 1:22 remaining.

Barker’s Austin Sullivan puts up a shot over Albion defender Bryce Pritchard.

Barker interrupted with a layup by Malik Smith to regain what proved to be its last lead at 65-63.

Farley, who had a career high scoring night, put Albion back on top for good at 66-65 with 21 seconds remaining after a free throw and a rebound basket.

Pritchard gave Albion a little breathing room at 68-65 with two clutch free  throws at the 15 second mark but the Purple Eagles couldn’t savor the victory until a Barker three-point shot bounced off the rim and out at the buzzer.

Farley finished with a career high 30 points as Pritchard netted 18, Ward and Demetrius Gardner 8 and Dylan Fox and Xavier Cornick 2.

Smith led Barker with 21 as Austin Sullivan had 15, Nick Brandt 12, Evan Ecker 8, Preston Harris 5 and Zach Richbart 4.

Barker jumped out to a 15-9  first period lead as Ecker tallied 6 and Smith 4.

Albion though erupted for 22 points in the second period, including 10 by Farley and 6 by Pritchard, to rally into a narrow 31-30 half-time lead.

The contest remained tight throughout the third period which ended with Barker back on top by two, 49-47.

Sullivan hit two threes and Smith one for the Raiders in the third period as Brandt added a pair of buckets from close range.  Farley had 8 and Prtichard 6 to keep Albion close.

The Raiders extend the advantage to eight, 63-55, with three minutes to go as Sullivan and Brandt both had a pair of baskets and Smith a three.

However, the last surge and the victory belonged to Albion as Pritchard scored 6, Farley 5 and Ward 2 to lead the Purple Eagles decisive 13-2 run to close the tight contest.

Albion is now 4-2 in N-O action and Barker 0-4.