Conway outlasts Stratford

Conway survived a close fight with Stratford Wednesday.

The Conway Tigers advanced to the second round of the 5A playoffs with a 57-53 win over Stratford Wednesday night at Conway High.
 
The Tigers had a 46-33 lead going into the final quarter of play and even saw their advantage stretch to 17 points before the midway point. However, the Knights pushed back and made things close.
 
“Stratford didn’t quit and I knew they weren’t going to quit,” Conway coach Michael Hopkins said. “We have to learn and luckily we get another chance to play. We definitely need to play a lot better.”
 
Stratford went on an 18-7 run in the fourth quarter to cut the Conway lead to 53-51 with 1:46 to go in the fourth. 
 
The Knights had the chance to take the lead in the final 30 seconds after a free throw miss by Tonka Hemingway. As Stratford drove to the basket, they lost the ball. Conway senior Tim Steele went 3-for-4 from the free throw line in the final 30 seconds to seal the win for the Tigers.
 
“It’s all mental,” Steele said. “I know that whenever I step out on the court from here on out, it could be my last game. I have to get keep going and do everything right so myself and my fellow seniors can keep playing.”
 
“Tim’s a four-year starter, so we expect those sorts of things from him,” Hopkins said. 
 
Steele led all Conway scorers with 15 points on the night, while Hemingway added 13.
 
One of the key factors in the game was rebounding. Stratford out-rebounded the Tigers, and that’s something Hopkins want to see change Saturday.
 
“We need to be better,” the coach said. “The deeper we go into the playoffs, the more difficult they get. If we want to advance, we have to play better than we did tonight.”
 
Conway improved to 11-10 on the season. The Tigers are 8-2 in their last 10 games. 
 
The Tigers will play River Bluff Saturday at Conway High School. 
 

Scores from other Wednesday prep games:

5A (boys)

Carolina Forest 55  Wando 51

Goose Creek 52  St. James 28

4A (boys)

North Myrtle Beach 73  Hilton Head 51

Myrtle Beach 72  Midland Valley 51

Contact Charles D. Perry at 843-488-7236

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