POINT PLEASANT, W.Va. — Just not enough firepower down the home stretch.
Visiting Ripley used a 43-32 second half surge to turn a slim four-point halftime advantage into a hard-fought 71-56 decision over the Point Pleasant boys basketball team on Thursday night in a non-conference matchup at The Dungeon in Mason County.
The Big Blacks (7-15) hit three trifectas and received five points from Hunter Bush while building a slim 11-10 edge after one quarter of play, but the hosts also never led following the opening eight minutes of action.
The Vikings (12-9) held PPHS to just three field goals and made an 18-13 second quarter push to turn that one-point deficit into a 28-24 cushion at the break.
Kyelar Morrow poured in a trio of 3-pointers in the third frame, but RHS countered with nine points from Ty Johnson as part of a 25-17 surge that extended the lead out to 53-41 entering the finale.
Bush tacked on five points in the fourth, but the guests ultimately closed out regulation with an 18-15 spurt to wrap up the 15-point outcome.
Point Pleasant — which has now dropped two straight decisions after winning three in a row — made 20 total field goals, including nine trifectas, and also went 7-of-7 at the free throw line for 100 percent.
Morrow and Bush paced the Red and Black with 18 points apiece, followed by Braxton Yates with 16 markers. Aidan Sang and Bradyn Canterbury completed the scoring with two points each.
Ripley netted 28 total field goals, including four trifectas, and was also perfect at the charity stripe on all 11 of its attempts. The Vikings have now won two straight and four of their last five overall.
Johnson led the guests with a game-high 21 points, followed by Isaac Putnam with 20 points and Jacob Fouty with eight markers. Tobias Schott and Isaiah Riffe were next with seven points each, while Timmy Wickersham and Cayden Keeler completed the winning tally with respective efforts of six and two points.
Point Pleasant opens Class AA Region IV, Section 1 tournament play on Tuesday when the fourth-seeded Big Blacks host fifth-seeded Sissonville in a quarterfinal contest at 7 p.m.
Bryan Walters can be reached at 740-446-2342, ext. 2101.