Baylor 45, Briarcrest 44. Thirteen minutes after being assessed a questionable technical foul for a quick - and understandable - reaction to being called for an offensive foul, Baylor senior Tre Jackson redeemed the moment, making a free throw with less than one second on the clock to beat Briarcrest 45-44 in Friday's state basketball semifinal and advance the Raiders to Saturday's state championship game.
The technical cost the Raiders two points midway through the third quarter and Jackson was removed from the game to calm himself. But he was back in as the game wound down, in the right place to rebound Beyuan Hendricks' 3-point buzzer-beater try, and was fouled on a move to the basket. He made the first free throw, and after a Briarcrest timeout, appeared to miss the second on purpose to get the clock started sooner. The Saints' prayer at the buzzer was unanswered.
Randy Brady was the Baylor scoring leader, netting 13 points in the close, see-saw game. Patrick Urey hit two 3-pointers and finished with 10 points, Niko Simpkins added nine, Hendricks was good on two 3-pointers and scored eight points, Jackson finished with four points, and Boris Ristanovic had one point, a big free throw late in the game. Cedric Henderson led Briarcrest, 29-4, with 11 points.
Baylor, 19-6, will play the winner of Friday's Brentwood Academy - Memphis University School semifinal for the state title Saturday at 8:30 ET in Lipscomb University's Allen Arena. The Raiders did not play MUS this season and split games with Brentwood Academy, both games decided by two points and both in overtime.
For complete stats of Friday's semifinal, click here.
(photo of Jackson is from the quarterfinal win over Ensworth and taken by C.B. Schmelter, timesfreepress.com)