SEMINOLE — All night, Seminole coach Josh Walker yelled at his team about taking care of the basketball, so much so that by the end of Saturday's game against Wharton, the coach's normally authoritative voice was strained.
The Warhawks still heard the message loud and clear. The Wildcats would have been wise to listen, too.
Seminole overcame a nine-point fourth-quarter deficit by forcing Wharton into uncharacteristic turnovers. The Warhawks outscored the Wildcats 23-7 over the final eight minutes for a 54-46 win in the fifth of six games at the Keith MacCollom Shootout.
"We attacked the rim a little bit better, and I felt our press kind of stuck it to them in the fourth quarter," Walker said. "We stepped it up defensively."
Wharton (15-3) took a 40-31 lead on a free throw by Sir Patrick Reynolds (team-high 14 points). That's when Seminole (12-5) slowed down offensively, passing the ball continuously, searching for the best shot. Justin Hollis and Matt Cassity drained back-to-back 3-pointers to bring Seminole within three.
Hollis' field goal with 1:57 remaining gave Seminole its first lead, 46-44, since the score was 2-0 in the first quarter. Guard Jarron King (game-high 19) scored 40 seconds later for a 48-44 edge.
The Warhawks' defense was harassing down the stretch and didn't allow the Wildcats a good look. Wharton had seven turnovers in the fourth quarter, 16 overall.
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