HAWLEY — The Sweet-water boys basketball team had victory in its grasp, taking a 42-41 lead at Hawley with 14.5 seconds left on Tuesday. But the Bearcats came back to claim a 43-42 win on a last-second shot.
Kaleb Hoover scored 27 points for Sweetwater, the last two giving the Mustangs a one-point lead with 14.5 left, but Hawley’s Keagan Fernandez came back to swish the winning basket with five seconds left and spoil Sweetwater’s opener.
The Mustangs trailed at the end of each quarter but stayed close throughout thanks to Hoover, a soph-omore playing his first var-sity game. No other Mustang had more than four points.
Hawley led 25-21 at half-time, but just 32-31 enter-ing the fourth quarter and both teams scored 11 points in the final eight minutes.
Sweetwater was unable to get off a shot in time after Fernandez, who had 14 points, hit the go-ahead basket for the Bearcats.
Tino Martinez and Patrick Palacios each scored four points while Taylor Jones had three points and Dylon Adames and Willie Norman two. Adames and Palacios were the only other Mus-tangs to hit field goals, but Sweetwater was 16-of-31 at the line as Hawley fouled out three players.
Sweetwater will play its home opener this Friday against Coleman.