Bobcats bow out of district tournament

Thursday, February 14, 2013
Donnie Hoppe scored five points in his final game for Berryville in a 54-49 loss to Prairie Grove. (Charles Chappell /

GENTRY -- Berryville coach Brent Compton watched from the bench Tuesday night as the Bobcats leaped out to a 20-9 first-period advantage over Prairie Grove in the opening round of the 1-3A District Tournament at Gentry.

He painfully watched the fourth period as Prairie Grove mounted a comeback to end Berryville's season.

The Pirates scored 26 points in the final stanza to overcome a 37-28 third-period deficit for a 54-49 win, dashing the Bobcats hopes of reaching regional action next week in Maumelle.

"In the fourth quarter everything we did went wrong and everything they did went right," said Berryville coach Brent Compton. "If it could go bad it went bad."

The Bobcats finished with an overall record of 15-12 as Josh Morrell led Berryville in scoring with 15 points. He was followed by Austin Carr with 10 and Austin Lehr with eight. Matt Manley finished with five as did Donnie Hoppe in his final game wearing purple and gold.

"We played pretty well in the first quarter," Compton said. "Josh had nine points in first quarter. They had no answer for him."

But the officials did. With two quick fouls, one at the end of the first and one to open the second, Morrell was forced to the bench, allowing the Tigers to start chipping away at the deficit.

"He had to sit pretty much the entire second quarter," Compton said. "After that we just lost our momentum. Then they went from man to a triangle defense and started catching up."

The teams traded 10-point effort in the third before Prairie Grove made their late charge.

"It was a dead heat in the third quarter," Compton said. "We didn't play great. But it wasn't terrible. They did the same thing to us that we did to them last Tuesday. We outscored them 25-14 in the final period to beat them. I don't know what happened. We used every timeout trying to stop the bleeding. It's hard to explain."

Compton said the final half of the season was indicative of the season as a whole.

"We turned the ball over and were playing not to lose instead of to win," he said. "The momentum changed and we couldn't overcome it. We were really up and down all year and never really saw our potential but just maybe a couple of times. We just never put it together. And now we will never know."

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