The Hardin County 1A Sectional started with a thriller between Goreville and Webber Township. Both team’s fans traveled well after each upended higher seeds in the regional finals. But Goreville cheered last, winning the sectional semifinal, 58-50.
Webber fans had much to crow about in the first half. The Trojans led by as many as 17 points in the second quarter. But the Blackcats would claw back into striking range, as the Trojans held a 30-21 halftime halftime lead.
Goreville continued their comeback in the third quarter, opening the frame on an 8-0 run to cut the Webber lead to one point. Goreville would then go on to take the lead with less than two minutes remaining in the quarter, before Webber immediately retook the lead moments later.
For much of the fourth quarter, it looked like the Trojans would be able to nurse their slim margin, holding small leads for a majority of the quarter. But Goreville was able to turn up the pressure in the final minutes, led by back-to-back steals by senior Braden Webb. Webb would start the charge with a steal and an open layup to give the lead to Goreville for the final time.
On the next Goreville defensive stand, Webb would force a steal again, leading to a transition bucket for Morgan Bishop. The Blackcats were then able to lock down the Trojans in the final 90 seconds, ending the game on a 12-3 run.
Webber showed strong ball control for most of the game, with just five turnovers in the first three quarters. But it was the turnovers forced by Goreville in the closing 90 seconds that turned the tides for the Blackcats. Webber had their turnovers doubled in the closing minutes, as the Blackcats spurred the closing run by forcing another five turnovers from the Trojans.
Goreville now advances to the 1A Sectional on Friday in Elizabethtown. They will play the winner of tonight’s semifinal between the Cairo Pilots and the Sesser-Valier Red Devils.