Arkansas High School Basketball > 5A Basketball


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The Siloam Springs Panthers can hit 2-point shots, too.

Siloam Springs hit just six shots from 3-point range, but hit plenty of others in capturing the first boys state basketball championship in school history with a 61-40 win over defending state champion Greene County Tech for the Class 5A title at Hot Springs’ Summit Arena on Saturday.

Siloam Springs finished 22-8 while Greene County Tech wound up 25-6.

Siloam Springs had never played in a boys state championship game, but rolled through the state tournament with close wins over Wynne and  Little Rock Mills before coasting past Greenbrier in the semifinals and Greene County Tech on Saturday.

“This is the best we’ve played all year,” Siloam Springs head coach Jason McMahan said.

Greene County Tech scored the first seven points of the championship game on Saturday and led 14-6 four minutes into the contest. Siloam Springs then got hot and reeled off a 30-6 run to take command with a 36-20 lead behind Coleson Rakestraw’s 17 points.

“Some of these guys started hitting shots, and we quit letting them have wide-open looks,” MaMahan said. “We picked it up defensively and didn’t let them get the ball into the paint as easily.”

 Rakestraw had a pair of treys in the first half, was five of seven from the floor and five of five from the line.

“I’ve never had just one kid beat me,” Greene County Tech head coach Scott Bowlin said. “We let Rakestraw get away from us. We made three mistakes, and he made us pay all three times. He’s the best shooter in Arkansas.”

Rakestraw, who won the 5A-West regular-season scoring title, hit another trey in the third quarter, added a driving layup in the last period along with four free throws  to finish with 26 points and the Most Valuable Player award.

“It’s been really exciting,” Rakestraw said. “We’ve played hard, and the shots were falling.”

After hitting 37 3-point attempts in the first three state tournament games, Siloam Springs hit only six of 17 attempts from beyond the arc but outscored Greene County Tech by an 18-14 count inside and was 11 of 23 from short-range.

“Greene came out and got close to us, and I think they underestimated us getting to the rim and finishing,” McMahan said. “There’s that old adage that you live by the three, you die by the three, but if you have enough guys that can shoot it you can pretty much live most of the time. The other thing is that with our reputation, the other team has guarded us so tight that we can get into the lane.”

Siloam Springs needed only a pair of 3-pointers in the final half. Rakestraw’s that put the Panthers up 41-29 and then Christopher Eshnaur’s to open the last quarter for a 46-31 lead.

“We never made a run,” Bowlin said. “You make runs by making shots.”

Eshnaur added 17 points for Siloam Springs. Roger Jackson scored 10 points and had seven rebounds.

Wes Livingston led Greene County Tech with 13 points and five rebounds.

A complete statbox may be viewed at:


This is the best topic I've seen on this board...I just keep reading it over and over and grinning!  ;D


Want a cookie? lol
Siloam brought it that game.  Where is Rakestraw getting recruited to by the way?

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