EAST BANK, W.Va. -- Riverside's Tyus Wood nearly didn't play Wednesday night because of a migraine headache. By the end of the game, however, he'd given it to Cabell Midland.
Wood knocked down a key 3-pointer with 47 seconds remaining and followed with two free throws to help ice it as the Warriors rallied for a 54-48 victory at East Bank Middle School.
Tamar Lawson led Riverside with 18 points, including a breakaway slam dunk, and Josh Carpenter nearly added a double-double (10 points, nine rebounds).
The Warriors (4-1) trailed by as many as 12 points late in the third quarter, but staged a furious comeback as Midland went stone cold to start the final period.
"We all stepped up at the end of the game when it really mattered and got the win,'' said Wood, who finished with 13 points and four steals. "We're all confident now.''
Riverside was able to chip away at its deficit because the Knights (2-6) went scoreless for the first 5 minutes, 40 seconds of the fourth quarter. During that time, they were 0 of 14 from the floor and 0 of 2 at the foul line with five turnovers. Thus, a 42-34 lead evaporated into a 47-42 deficit as the Warriors scored 15 straight points between the quarters.
"I don't even know where to start with that,'' said Midland coach Matt Stead. "We're not used to being up in that situation. It's the first time all year we've been up with that kind of lead going into the fourth quarter. I really hoped we'd respond in a better fashion. It wasn't like we were shooting bad shots - we just couldn't put it in.''
Just when the Warriors thought they were on cruise control, Cabell Midland flashed one last surge.
A 3-pointer by the Knights' Keegan Adkins, followed by a five-second closely guarded call against Riverside and a basket by Mark Wilcox (20 points, seven rebounds) stuck Midland back into a 48-47 advantage with 1:08 to go.
Wood, however, mustered up one final flurry of his own.
He took an inside-out feed from Carpenter in the low post and drained a 3 from the top of the key to put Riverside up for good at 50-48. After a Wilcox miss at the other end, Wood was fouled and hit both free throws for a four-point edge with 28 seconds remaining.
Wood, who didn't start, seemed to be just a bit off much of the night, missing eight of his first 10 shots. The Warriors' lone senior brought a 25.5 scoring average into the game.