Jordan Sibert prepares to take a shot during Sunday’s TBT 33-point contest, his first time back at UD Arena since 2015. Photo courtesy of Ben Solomon, TBT.
A thrilling Sunday at UD Arena saw Boeheim’s Army and Team 23 advance to the TBT Championship Game, while hometown star Jordan Sibert of Red Scare enthralled the Dayton fans but fell just short in the semifinals of the 33-point contest.
33-point contest for $33,333.33
Between both semifinals, the 33-point contest who played to decide who takes home $33,333.33. Eight contestants battled to see who could make 11 threes in the quickest time in one-on-one match-ups based on where their team played in the TBT regionals.
In the first round, Conner Frankamp (Aftershocks) defeated Dusty Hannahs (Team Arkansas) in the Wichita final, Omar Strong (B1 Ballers) defeated Mike Daum (House of ‘Paign) in the Illinois final, Dayton Flyers representative Jordan Sibert (Red Scare) defeated Jeff Ledbetter (The Money Team) in the Columbus final, and Chris Moore (Primetime Players) defeated J.T. Elmore (Herd That) in the West Virginia final. Sibert said it felt great to be back at UD Arena.
“Anytime you can be on the court in front of the Flyer fans, it’s always a great opportunity. It’s always a blessing and an honor… these people were great.”
When Sibert made his eleventh shot in the quarterfinal round, the predominantly-Dayton fans roared their support for the former Flyers guard.
“It felt like a warm welcome,” Sibert said. “This is my home, and it was great to be able to come back and hear people cheer.”
In the semifinals, Strong defeated Frankamp, and to the dismay of the home crowd, Sibert’s eleventh 3-pointer was made less than a second after Moore’s.
“I just missed a couple (shots),” Sibert said. “(They were) just in-and-out, and that’s how it goes sometimes. But to get there, win or lose, that’s the goal, and that’s what I did. I was right there… but I wish it was a different outcome.”
The final round once again came down to both shooters tied at 10, but Strong was able to make his eleventh 3-pointer first and claimed the championship and $33,333.33.
Semifinal 1: Boeheim’s Army 66, Florida TNT 64
With a trio of early threes, two from Chris Warren, Florida TNT jumped out to a 15-8 lead at the first quarter media timeout with 3:25 remaining in the quarter.
Boeheim’s Army cut into the deficit slightly, forcing a timeout by Florida TNT with 33.5 seconds left in the quarter and their lead cut to 19-13. The same score remained at the end of the quarter, and Warren led all scorers with 6 points.
Florida TNT continued to knock down threes, improving to 6-9 from distance, and pushed their lead to 32-23 at the second quarter media timeout with 3:52 left in the quarter.
With the lead cut to eight, Florida TNT called a timeout with 2:02 left in the second quarter. But Boeheim’s Army wasn’t done, going on a 10-0 run to close the first half and trim the Florida TNT lead to 34-33 at halftime. At the break, Chris McCullough led all scorers with 10 points, but Florida TNT big man Keith Clanton had 8 points and 10 rebounds to help his team hold the halftime lead.
Scoring six straight to start the third quarter, Florida TNT pushed their lead to 40-33, forcing Boeheim’s Army to call timeout with 6:15 left in the quarter.
Boeheim’s Army was able to cut into the lead slightly, cutting Florida TNT’s lead to 45-40 with 2:34 left at the third quarter media timeout.
The difference remained the same, as Florida TNT held onto a 47-42 lead at the end of the third quarter. The main deciding factor for Florida TNT was their shooting percentage from three: 44 (8-18) to 15 (3-20) percent.
With two late free throws, Kenny Boynton gave Florida TNT a 58-53 lead heading into the Elam Ending. Led by Clanton with 16 points and 16 rebounds, Florida TNT needed just 8 points to reach the $1 million TBT Championship Game.
Once the Elam Ending started, momentum quickly shifted thanks to Boeheim’s Army guard Tyrese Rice, who poured in two threes and a layup to give the mainly Syracuse University alumni a 61-58 lead and put them five points from the championship game.
Rice made a free throw after a pair of their own from Florida TNT, and both teams were tied at 62-all, four points from the championship game.
Clanton made a pair of free throws, but Rice knocked down a floater to tie the game at 64, both teams just two points away. Both teams missed their first chance to win, but on Florida TNT’s next possession, Rice stole the ball from Kenny Boynton and broke away for a layup to win the game and send Boeheim’s Army into the $1 million championship game. Rice finished the game with 24 points, leading both teams.
Semifinal 2: Team 23 78, Blue Collar U 62
Up until the first quarter media timeout, both teams were evenly balanced, with Blue Collar U jumping out to a 12-10 lead with 3:39 left in the quarter. Lamonte Beard led all scorers with 7 points, but a lob slammed home by Team 23’s Michale Kyser was the highlight of the early stages.
A competitive opening quarter ended with a pair of lay-ups from Walt Lemon stemming from crossover moves that left his defenders stranded. The lay-ups gave Team 23 a 19-17 lead at the end of the first quarter.
To start the second, Team 23 held their lead, but an and-1 conversion by Dontay Caruthers on both sides of the second quarter media timeout with 3:53 left in the quarter tied the game at 28.
Team 23 once again took back the lead, and held a 34-31 advantage at halftime. At the break, Lemon led all scorers with 9 points, but Team 23 received point contributions from seven different players. Neither team could get the threes to fall, with both shooting a combined 2-24 from beyond the 3-point arc.
Blue Collar U jumped ahead early in the third quarter, 38-36, forcing Team 23 to call timeout with 6:26 left in the quarter.
Some words and shoves were exchanged after a foul on a Blue Collar U dunk attempt, and technical fouls were assessed to both teams. Team 23 had reclaimed the lead by two, but Blue Collar U once again responded to tie the game at 48. But a late three by Eric Griffin gave Team 23 a 51-48 lead heading into the fourth quarter.
Team 23 started the fourth quarter on fire, going on a 13-2 run over the first five minutes and making five straight field goals to take a 66-52 lead with just over a minute left until the Elam Ending.
The lead continued to balloon up to 70-55 for Team 23 when the game entered the Elam Ending, with the target score set at 78 for a spot in the $1 million championship game.
It was easy work for Team 23 in the Elam Ending, and a layup by leading-scorer Marcus Hall (16 points) thrust Team 23 into the $1 million TBT Championship Game with a 78-62 win. The only hiccup was after a tie-up when both teams continued to fight for the ball after the whistle, with two players even squaring up to fight on the court, ultimately resulting in the ejections of Eric Griffin of Team 23 and Nick Perkins of Blue Collar U.
On Tuesday night, Boeheim’s Army will face Team 23 at 9 p.m. at UD Arena for a chance to win the TBT Championship trophy along with the $1 million prize.