It wasn't quite the offensive showcase that some expected Saturday morning in the third game of the ARS Rescue Rooter National Hoopfest DFW, but the Richardson JJ Pearce Mustangs were able to secure the first victory for a Texas team in the two-day event.
And it came down to the final shot.
Chicago Simeon trailed by two possessions with under 10 seconds to play in the fourth quarter, only to have a potential game-tying three-pointer clang off of the front of the rim just before the buzzer. An easy putback bucket sent the Wolverines back north with a one-point loss, 53-52.
Drew Timme, of JJ Pearce, was named the MVP of the game after he scored a team-high 17 points, collected six rebounds and dished out five assists. The 6-foot-10 center is ranked No. 60 in the ESPN top-100 for the class of 2019 and is committed to Gonzaga.
Sterling Hopkins added 10 points for Pearce, while Walker Timme had 11 and Chozen Amadi scored nine.
Simeon was led by Antonio Reeves' 21 points. Kejuan Clements added 10 points, Frederick Poole had eight and Sincere Callwood scored seven for the Wolverines.
The game was the third-of-seven to be played in the two-day showcase held at Mike Turner Gymnasium in Waxahachie.
IMG Academy (Fla) defeated DeSoto in the first game of the National Hoopfest DFW in Waxahachie on Friday evening. The hosts Waxahachie Runnin' Indians then fell to Huntington Prep (WV) in the second game Friday night.
Neither Simeon or Pearce wowed those in attendance inside Mike Turner Gymnasium in Waxahachie over the first eight minutes, as they both struggled on the offensive ending and combined for just 16 points.
The pace certainly increased in the second quarter though and Antonio Reeves' 12 points helped Simeon carry a 25-23 lead into the halftime locker room.
Drew Timme led Pearce with seven points at the break.
Timme scored the first points of the second half after he blocked a Simeon shot on the defensive end and then raced down the court for a tough layup in transition off of a Chozen Amadi assist. The bucket came with 5:57 to play in the third quarter and tied the game at 25.
That was about the extent of the offensive highlights in the quarter, as the two teams combined for 11 points the rest of the way. Simeon led 32-29 at the end of the third quarter.
With just under three minutes to play in the fourth quarter, Amadi drilled a three-pointer for Pearce to put the Mustangs up 46-43, only to have Reeves respond with a trey on the Wolverines ensuing possession.
Amadi reclaimed a lead for the Mustangs, 48-47, with a pair of free throws with 2:09 to play in the fourth quarter.
With the game tied a little later, 23 drove the left baseline for a layup to put Pearce back on top, 50-48, as the clock dipped under one minute to play.
While still up two, the Mustangs were forced to call back-to-back timeouts with 19.3 seconds left on the fourth-quarter clock.
Sterling Hopkins was fouled after the Mustangs' third inbound attempt was successful and he converted on both opportunities at the charity stripe to seal the JJ Pearce victory.
Simeon did have a shot just before the buzzer to potentially tie the ballgame at 53 but could not get it to fall. A Simeon player collected the rebound for an easy putback with Pearce holding on for the 53-52 victory.
Travis M. Smith, @Travis5mith