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Faith Academy boys basketball defeats Bryan Brazos Christian on buzzer beater

CAPTION: Faith Academy senior guard Diego Chavira hit a 3-pointer before the last horn sounded to ensure another Flames victory. Staff photo by Jennifer Fierro

The Faith Academy of Marble Falls boys basketball team squeaked out a 59-56 win against Bryan Brazos Christian Jan. 19 when senior guard guard Diego Chavira nailed the 3-pointer right before the horn sounded to end the contest.

The victory sets up a showdown for first place in District 3-3A of the Texas Association of Private and Parochial Schools when the Flames travel to face Waco Live Oak Classical at 4 p.m. Saturday, Jan. 21.

“A lot of credit to (Brazos head coach Brian) Thrift and Brazos Christian,” head coach Zakk Revelle said. “They were well prepared. They shot the ball well.”

The Flames (14-7, 5-0) led 28-16 at the half.

“We played well offensively in the first and second quarters,” the coach said. “We moved the ball well and got shots we wanted. They just wouldn’t fall. We’d honestly been dominating the first half.”

And as he predicted Jan. 17, Brazos Christian stepped back on the floor in the second half with renewed energy and began to challenge for the lead. Revelle said he told his players to prepare to get every opponents’ best efforts, especially when Faith is the visitor.

“There’s going to be a big wave of 3-pointers,” the coach told his players during halftime. “We have to weather the storm and understand they can score, too.”

Sure enough, the Eagles began to fire away from long range. By the end of the quarter, they outscored the Flames 21-11 and trimmed the deficit to 39-37.

“We’re a really good second-half defensive team,” Revelle said. “The shots they were hitting were over outstretched arms. They were making really tough shots. It got louder and louder as the confidence grew for them.”

The two teams traded buckets throughout the final stanza. With 2 minutes and 15 seconds remaining, Brazos led 53-48.

But the Flames made three defensive stops and scored three buckets to regain the advantage.

Wanting to make another defensive stop, the Flames “gambled on a play, and they hit a 3-pointer to tie the game,” Revelle said, at 56-56. He called a timeout.

The Eagles dropped back into a 2-3 zone and got the ball when it was tipped to one of their players in a corner. Faith forwards Asher Apel, a sophomore, and Brock Davis, a senior, then trapped the Eagle, who turned the ball over. That’s when Revelle called another timeout and drew up a play.

“The turnover ended up being a blessing,” he said. “I told them let’s take the last shot. At that point, we were 1 for 12 on 3-pointers. So a 3-pointer wasn’t an option.”

But as the Flames worked the ball, the Eagles refused to let them attempt a high-percentage shot. With time running out, senior forward Will Lewis got the ball and immediately passed to Chavira, who set his feet and took dead aim at the basket without hesitation.

“Diego was right on rhythm and threw it in,” the coach said.

Chavira finished with 10 points and 4 assists. Davis led with 32 points and 10 rebounds.

The Eagles hit 9 of 25 3-pointers.

“People are going to do that sometimes,” Revelle said. “I felt like we turned the ball over a little too much.”

While the Flames typically have the tallest line-up in the district to be physically dominant, they are showing they are equally tough when it comes to the mental side of the sport.

“We’re learning to be tough,” the coach said. “The toughest team wins. I think we’re learning that. I think we have physical toughness and on the mental, I think we’re learning to be tougher. We were tough enough. When we got down, people didn’t panic. During a timeout I told them, ‘A little adversity never hurt anybody.’ It was a good thing for us.”

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