Madison academy 49, greensboro 46 mustangs hit crucial fts to advance to 4a title game – how to cook bacon in an electric oven

Madison academy senior calvin bacon was less than confident when he went to the free throw line in a tie game in the final minute of the class 4A state semifinals on tuesday night.

“I’ve actually been struggling at the free throw line lately,” bacon said. “so I went up there on the first one thinking, ‘please don’t miss it, please don’t miss.’”

Bacon hit both free throws with 39.1 seconds left giving his mustangs the lead for good in a 49-46 thriller at the BJCC’s legacy arena. Madison academy (25-8) will now play for its seventh state title since 2006 against cordova on friday afternoon.

“I thought our defensive plan won the game for us,” MA coach andy blackston said. “when we hold people to less than 50 points in the game, I think our winning percentage is like 90 percent. I thought we also showed championship poise tonight.

We made all the big plays at the end of the game. Our guys seemed calm and stepped up and did what they needed to do.”

free throw line

The game was tight throughout. There were eight ties and 13 lead changes. The mustangs’ biggest lead was six points. Greensboro’s biggest cushion was five. The raiders’ roger anderson tied the game for the final time at 43-43 with a pull-up jumper with 40 seconds remaining.

Bacon was fouled a second later in the backcourt and gave his team the lead for good from the charity stripe. Calvin walker hit four free throws in the final 22 seconds to give the mustangs a 49-43 lead. Samuel nevels hit a half-court 3 at the buzzer to make it a little closer.

“my hat is off to madison academy,” greensboro coach barry williams said. “it was a great game. They are very well coached. I admire what coach blackston does and the program he’s built. I felt like we had a chance to win the game. Down the stretch, things just didn’t bounce our way. I’m proud of my guys. I told them they have nothing to be ashamed of.”

Game ball: calvin walker did a little of everything for the mustangs.Madison academy he finished with 17 points, 10 rebounds, seven blocks and five assists. He also was 5-of-6 from the free throw line, including the four crucial ones in the final 22 seconds.

Stat sheet: for madison academy, calvin bacon finished with 18 points. Reed zitting had eight points and seven rebounds. Five of his points came in the final four minutes to keep the mustangs within striking distance. For greensboro, damiqual edwards had nine points and 12 rebounds and john moore also had nine.

By the numbers: 4 – number of players who scored for MA. … 7 – number of players who scored for greensboro. … 2 – made free throws in 10 chances for the raiders. Madison academy was 12-of-16. … 9 – turnovers by each team. … 15 – made shots from the field out of 50 for the mustangs. They also went just 7-of-24 from the 3-point line.

Coachspeak: “we knew coming in they were more athletic than us and that is always a challenge. We thought it was important to shoot the ball well, and we really didn’t.Madison academy all year long I’ve talked to my guys about realizing the 3 is not the answer to everything. How are you going to win a big game when the 3s aren’t falling? Tonight, we found a way.” – blackston.

They said it … : “normally we shoot free throws really well. I would say we are 60 or 70 percent for the season. We’ve had a few games where we shot terribly, and tonight was one of them. It’s probably the worst we’ve had. It’s tough to beat anyone when you shoot 20 percent from the free throw line.” – williams.

“calvin bacon can always hit a big shot for us. He’s like the little engine who could. A game like this is mental more than anything else. I try to tell our guys four things – play hard, play smart, play together and make plays. Bacon made big plays tonight. Walker made big plays, and they all showed poise and confidence in themselves and their teammates.” – blackston.

“we were in the final four last year and we lost this game in double overtime.Free throw line the bus ride home was not fun. I came here as a sophomore when we won it, but I don’t think I touched the floor in the playoffs. This is special. Most of us have known each other since first grade. It’s super cool to be in a title game with these guys.” – bacon.

“we all love each other. This is the best team I’ve ever played on. We might have had more talent before, but this team is unique.” – walker.

“I try to look forward and not worry about past mistakes. I struggled with that early this season, but coach pushed me hard to be successful and focus on the play at hand.” – zitting on his key five-point run in the final four minutes.

“I felt like shot selection was the difference late. Maybe I should have called a timeout and ran a set play to calm my guys down and get the shot we wanted. At the same time, we’ve played 35 or 36 games. The kids know what they are doing, and I trust them to run the offense. I also didn’t want to give coach blackston a chance to set up his defense.” – williams on the game’s final minute.Free throw

What’s next? Madison academy takes on cordova (25-9) at 5:45 p.M. Friday for the state championship. The blue devils held off andalusia in the day’s first 4A semifinal. Greensboro finished the season at 23-12.