Buckhorn Repeats as AHSAA Class 6A State Champions in Overtime Thriller Over Mountain Brook

Birmingham, AL – For the second consecutive season the Buckhorn Bucks clinched the AHSAA Class 6A boys’ hoops title.  The Bucks came out on top in an edge-of-your-seat encounter that concluded with double buzzer-beating drama. Buckhorn guard Fred Derrick stripped the ball from Carson Romero as time expired sealed a nail-biting 52-51 overtime victory over perennial prep power Mountain Brook (27-8).

“I just saw the ball, and I had to get it,” Derrick recounted about the final, pivotal moment of the game. 

While Buckhorn (29-5) found themselves celebrating prematurely at the end of regulation after Derrick’s missed shot was followed up by Deven Chapman’s putback, the basket was subsequently annulled upon video review, as per National Federation of State High School Associations (NFHS) rules permitting the use of video replay in championship deciders. The game proceeded to overtime with the score deadlocked at 45-45.

Mountain Brook head coach Tyler Davis, had seen the decisive moment approaching. “I saw the red light go off before” the shot, Davis noted postgame, reflecting the razor-thin margins that dictated the outcome.

Buckhorn faced additional challenges when sophomore standout Caleb Holt, battling a leg injury and compromised mobility, was disqualified with more than 45 seconds left in regulation. Yet, in overtime, Derrick’s bank-shot with 25.7 seconds remaining pushed Buckhorn into the lead. Jeremiah Wilson’s free throw extended their advantage, putting further pressure on on the Spartans. 

Fate handed Mountain Brook’s Ty Davis the potential to equalize from the charity stripe with just 7.5 seconds on the clock, but despite sinking the first, his second attempt fell short. Following Chapman’s rebound and subsequent missed free throws, Romero’s final charge to the rim was thwarted by Derrick’s timely intervention.

Reflecting on the action-packed finale, Derrick stated, “I just couldn’t let him score,” an attitude mirrored by coach Patrick Harding’s commendation, “Fred’s got incredible hands.”

Holt was recognized as the 6A state tournament MVP for a consecutive year. Despite this, Holt deferred the honor to Derrick, who scored a team-high 19 points, acknowledging his crucial role in their win. “Fred clutched up at the end,” declared Holt. “Without Fred, we wouldn’t have won this game.”

Harding praised the team’s fortitude, especially considering Holt’s selfless postgame gesture. “This one is special in a different way…they proved as a group, as a unit, that we could do that even when he’s not his best.”

Click here to recap the 2024 AHSAA State Basketball Finals. 

Ty Davis led Mountain Brook with 14 points.

In closing, despite the competitive spirit and impressive showing from both teams, Harding reflected an appreciation for the high level of play exhibited. “No team deserved to lose that game,” he said, lauding Mountain Brook’s formidable display.

The excitement of state championship basketball concludes Saturday night with the Hoover Bucs  and Enterprise Wildcats squaring off in the Class 7A finals at the BJCC’s Legacy Arena.