on last-second shot
By BARRY BURLESON
H.W. Byers try for its sixth straight State Tournament berth came to a stunning end Thursday night in Coahoma County.
The Lions saw Hollandale Simmons sink a short shot as time expired and snatch a 43-42 victory in the quarter-finals of the Class 2A North State event.
Coach Gerone Kirklands squad had been to Jackson five consecutive seasons. This year the school made the step up to 2A.
The Lions fell behind Hollandale Simmons 18-14 at the half. They trailed 32-27 after three quarters but managed to rally and lead by one with nine seconds to go, only to have Hollandale Simmons strike just before the buzzer.
Bradley Coleman, the lone senior on the H.W. Byers squad, scored 13 points. Nicholas Tate contributed nine. Seven Lions scored.
Coach Kirklands team finished with a 19-15 mark. In his 40th season (seventh at Byers), he surpassed the 800-win plateau.
Hollandale Simmons went on to win the North State Tournament.
Byers vs. Broad Street
The Lions made it to the quarter-finals with a 75-60 win in round one over Shelby Broad Street.
Tate was the star of the show at home. He lit up the scoreboard with 30 points, including four threes. He scored 19 points in the fourth quarter, including a 10-of-11 performance from the free throw line.
Three other players scored in double figures Coleman with 14, Courtney Young with 11 and Demetrius Fitzpatrick with 10.
Byers fell behind 10-4 with 3:39 to go in the first quarter, and Kirkland used a timeout.
His Lions responded with back-to-back steals and lay-ups. Byers led 16-12 after one quarter.
Shelby hit four threes in the second quarter and knotted the game at 25, but Byers regrouped and was up 31-28 at the half.
The Lions advantage was 46-39 after three periods, and Tate took over in the fourth.
For Shelby Broad Street, Ricktavius Knight and Marquis Mems scored 18 each.
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