Raiders get back to .500 with barn-burner win

Raiders get back to .500 with barn-burner win

HARRISON, Ark. — The Raiders got back to a .500 record with a barn-burner.

Three Rivers was clutch at the foul line in its closing possessions to beat North Arkansas 101-95 on Monday in Harrison, Ark.

"It was a lot of work, and we'll take (the win)," Three Rivers coach Brian Bess said.

The Raiders (10-10) finished 11 for 14 on free throws, including an intentional miss with 0.2 seconds left in the game, and had six players in double figures.

"That's probably what we need to do here on out," Bess said.

Dominique Hardimon, who has been battling a shoulder injury recently, got his second double-double of the season with 16 points and 12 rebounds. He previously had 14 points and 15 rebounds at MSU-West Plains.

"I thought he played really good," Bess said.

With regular starting forward Amadou Fall sitting out Monday's game, Mandell Campbell had 14 points.

Kevin Jones got 16 points, Shannon Strickland had 13, and Jonathan Ninkingira got 11.

Jacob Shoemaker had 10 points, all in the first half. He made eight straight for the Raiders and then became a focus for North Arkansas' defense.

Doniphan High School alum Trent Lippoldt had 21 points for the Division II Pioneers. Former Twin Rivers Royal Hayden Thomas had six points.

The Raiders earned their first double-digit lead with 12 minutes remaining, but North Arkansas cut it in half with 7 minutes to play.

North Arkansas (11-8) scored and drew a foul with 2 minutes and change remaining. Cyrus Alexander made both free throws to cut Three Rivers' lead to five.

Lippoldt's putback made it a four-point game with 1 1/2 minutes left.

Ninkingira caught a pass on the block, stepped into the paint, drew a foul, and made one free throw.

North Arkansas missed a 3, and Keith Kiner grabbed the rebound.

Three Rivers slowed the offense as the clock ticked past a minute. They missed; Lippoldt grabbed the rebound and raced down the court before drawing a foul with 46 seconds left.

He made both free throws, and North Arkansas, trailing 98-95, called a timeout.

The Pioneers came out in a 1-3-1 zone. Kinyon Hodges got the ball with 14 left on the shot clock, drove, kicked out to Strickland, who dribbled left and drew a foul. He made both free throws to give the Raiders 100 points with 24 seconds left.

North Arkansas burned the clock down to 6 seconds before Thomas tried a 3 and missed. The loose ball went out of bounds off North Arkansas with under 2 seconds left.

"That was a great defensive stand," Bess said.

Jones was immediately fouled on the inbounds, made the first, and missed the second as time expired.


Scott Borkgren - Daily American Republic