Fourth Quarter Dooms Blue Ridge Boys Basketball in Tournament Loss to Ridgeview

MONTICELLO, Ill. -- It was a tale of two good quarters and two bad ones for the Knights in the fifth-place game of the Monticello Holiday Hoopla.

The bad out-weighed the good, as Blue Ridge was outscored by a combined 42-11 in the first and fourth quarters en route to a 58-44 loss to Ridgeview.

In the second quarter, the Knights went on a 17-8 run to go into halftime with a 29-25 deficit after trailing 21-8 at the end of the first quarter. The Mustangs were held to 9-of-30 shooting in the first half en route to a 32.7-percent shooting performance.

Offensively, Blue Ridge was led in the second quarter by Tucker Johnson, who scored eight of his 10 first-half points in the quarter. Johnson made 5-of-10 shots from the field in the first half and ended the game leading the Knights with 12 points on 6-of-18 shooting.

Johnson also recorded 15 rebounds, including seven in the first half, and three blocks and three steals. Johnson scored the final points of the first quarter, getting a field goal in the paint while getting fouled with 4.2 seconds left in the quarter.

Although he could not make the free throw to complete the three-point play, the basket started a 19-6 run that continued into the second quarter and ended with a Johnson bucket that cut Blue Ridge's deficit to 27-25.

Prior to the run, Ridgeview started the game outscoring the Knights 21-6, starting with a couple of 3-pointers from Trevor McIntosh that put the Mustangs up 6-1 with 6:33 left in the first quarter.

McIntosh finished the game with 13 points. Bryce Powell was the game's high scorer with 18 points, including 11 in the first half.

Johnson started the second half with a basket that cut Blue Ridge's deficit to 29-27. That started a 16-6 run that gave the Knights a 41-35 lead late in the third quarter.

Jon Jones made a couple of 3-pointers during that run to help Blue Ridge pull away. The first of those 3-point shots gave the Knights the lead at 34-32.

Following a McIntosh free throw, Jones made another shot from beyond the arc to extend Blue Ridge's lead to 37-33 with 2:31 left in the third quarter. The Knights led 41-37 at the end of the quarter.

Jones finished the game scoring all nine of his points via 3-pointers.

In the fourth quarter, Clint O'Neal scored his team's only three points. After Ridgeview tied the game at 41-41, O'Neal got a three-point play to give Blue Ridge the lead again at 44-41 with 6:46 left in the game.

O'Neal finished the game with six points and nine rebounds.

After O'Neal's three-point play, the Mustangs outscored the Knights 17-0 to clinch the game. Powell gave Ridgeview the go-ahead basket, a 3-pointer that put his team up 46-44.

McIntosh made a free throw and Will Weber scored a couple of field goals to extend the Mustangs' lead to 51-44 with about three minutes left to play.

"We have to learn how to win a game," Blue Ridge coach Kyle Watson said. "We need to learn how to execute."

In the second half, Ridgeview shot 10-of-18 from the free-throw line in the second half en route to a 19-of-35 shooting performance. The Knights, on the other hand, made 1-of-6 foul shots in the second half and 4-of-14 for the game.

"[The Mustangs] made their free throws. We did not," Watson said.

With the loss, Blue Ridge (4-9) settles for sixth place in the tournament. The Knights will be back in action on Tuesday, when they travel to Minonk for a Heart of Illinois Conference game against Fieldcrest.

"We've got to continue to do the little things," Watson said.

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