FLIPPIN — The Norfork Panthers overcame an eight-point second half deficit and used a 19-5 run to post a 67-58 quarterfinal victory over Alpena on Wednesday at the Arvest Bank Tournament.
Norfork trailed by eight early in the third and trailed 45-40 going into the final period.
That’s when junior Travis Lewis got going offensively, knocking down 19 of his game-high 34 points over the final eight minutes.
Lewis hit six field goals and went 7 of 9 from the foul line, and the 6-1 guard scored back-to-back baskets to give the Panthers the lead back at 47-45 with 5:26 left to play.
Wyatt Chapman followed with an old-fashioned 3-point play to push Norfork’s run to 10-0 and give the Panthers a 50-45 lead. After a bucket by Alpena’s Blake Hayes, Lewis scored two more buckets for a 54-47 lead.
Norfork never let the lead slip below four points the rest of the game and led by as many as 12.
Chapman added 15 points to Lewis’s game-high effort and Grant Casey added nine points on three 3-pointers for Norfork.
Michael Daniels hit for 20 to lead the Leopards, while Hayes notched 13 and Dawson Harp added 11.
The Panthers took an 11-6 lead at the end of one quarter after a 3-pointer by Casey, but Alpena climbed within one early in the second as a pair of free throws by Daniels made it 14-13.
Norfork went back up by as much as five when an old-fashioned 3-point play by Lewis at the 3:24 mark made it 20-15.
But the Leopards had another answer, scoring seven straight taking a 22-20 lead with 1:46 left in the half on a basket by Daniels.
Casey hit a trey to put Norfork back on top, but Alpena fought back again and took a 27-25 lead into halftime on a 3 by Harp with 3 seconds left.
Daniels scored six straight to open the second half as the Leopards led by as much as 33-25, but Lewis tossed in five straight to bring Norfork within 33-30. Alpena went 6 of 6 from the foul line in the third quarter, however, and held a 45-40 lead going into the final frame.
Daniels 20, Hayes 13, Harp 11, Lair 5, Phillips 4, Cartwell 3, Block 2.
Lewis 34, W.Chapman 15, Casey 9, C.Chapman 5, Standfield 4.
Norfork senior Abbie Belding grabbed a tipped pass and scored right before the buzzer to complete a 13-2 run with a game-winning shot.
Both teams traded droughts and rallies in the second half, and Norfork sophomore Marleigh Dodson scored the first two buckets of the second half, pushing Norfork’s lead to its biggest yet at 34-21. But after Yellville-Summit ended a near-four-minute drought, it answered with five straight to climb within eight.
Yellville-Summit eventually pulled to within five when Kyli Duffy drained a 3-poointer with :24 left in the third quarter, and she buried another to open the fourth, bringing the green-clad Lady Panthers within 36-34.
Norfork went ice cold in the fourth, hitting just one field goal over the first 6:30, on a bucket by Dodson early in the frame.
Yellville-Summit received three big buckets in the paint by Taylor McFarland, and it went up by as much as 47-38, ending a 26-4 run.
It was then Norfork;s turn to rally, with an Ivy McGowan 3-pointer cutting the deficit to 47-43 with :55 left. The teams traded a pair of free throws, and McGowan followed two missed free throws by Yellville-Summit with a basket with :32 left to climb within 49-47.
Yellville-Summit missed two more from the foul line, leaving the door open for Norfork, which received two big foul shots from sophomore McGowan with :16.8 remaining to knot the score.
Yellville-Summit turned the ball over with :06.8 left, and Norfork drew up one final play, where McGowan passed ahead to Dodson advancing toward the goal. The ball was deflected, but right to Belding, who was sprinting to the hoop from the other side of the court and made the easy basket for the victory.
Dodson led Norfork with 14 points, while McGowan added 12, with seven coming in the final quarter. Duffy led Yellville-Summit with 17 points.
LADY PANTHERS (9-4)
Dodson 14, McGowan 12, Belding 8, Irby 6, Staples 5, Greve 4, Scalf 2.
LADY PANTHERS (1-1)
Duffy 17, McFarland 10, Darnell 5, Helmke 4, Still 4, Adams 3, Jenkins 2, Gentry-Cape 2, Turner 2.
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