After controlling much of the team’s District 7-3A contest on the scoreboard versus the Breckenridge Buckaroos, the Millsap Bulldogs found themselves in a late hole, trailing 64-58 with two minutes left in regulation Tuesday night.
The Bulldogs remained unfazed however, continuing to chip away at the Buckaroos’ lead with an 8-4 run until the former pulled within one possession (68-66, Breckenridge) with 27 seconds remaining in the game.
Unfortunately, it was as close as Millsap would get, as the visiting team held on, 71-68, thanks in large part to a Breckenridge free throw in the contest’s waning moments.
Even so, Millsap Head Boys’ Basketball Coach Reagan Cox said he was immensely proud of the collective effort his players gave, continuing to hang tough regardless of the score or situation.
“By far I think one of the most complete games we’ve played,” Cox said.
“Granted, we won last week against Paradise, but we had to come back. But we had the lead almost the entire game [Tuesday], or it was back and forth. I’m extremely proud of the effort. I don’t remember the last time we had two dunks in game, so little things like that just spark the energy.
“We had a game plan and ran it to perfection on defense. There were a few slip ups here and there, but the effort and execution I can’t ask for more.”
Millsap came out hot on the offensive end, putting up 19 points in the first quarter, led by senior forward Jace Davis, who registered double-digit points (10) in the frame.
Davis built on that hot start en route to a team-high 23 points.
That offensive performance was coupled with an additional strong showing by fellow senior forward Dayson Benfer, who closely followed with 18 points.
Those offensive numbers helped translate into a 19-16 Millsap lead after one quarter, before retaining the advantage, 35-32 at halftime following a 16-16 scoring spread by the teams in the second frame.
Breckenridge remained in the hunt coming out of the break, rallying for a collective 21 third-quarter points by six total players while holding the home team to 15 points to take the lead, 53-50 heading into the fourth period.
While each team put up 18 points in the final frame, the Buckaroos’ three-point lead coming into the quarter proved the difference, as the visiting squad held on to win by the same margin.
In addition to Davis and Benfer’s efficiency on the offensive end, Millsap saw another four players tally points for the team, with junior guard Jake Knutson taking the third-leading spot with 10 points.
The Bulldogs play the Peaster Greyhounds in a district game at 8 p.m. Friday on the road.