EXETER — With 2:32 to play in the fourth quarter the Exeter-Milligan Timberwolves took a nine point 53-44 lead which seemed pretty comfortable at the time.
What ensued was 112 seconds of bedlam as the Heartland boys got to within two points on two occasions, but the Timberwolves pulled away over the last 40 seconds for the 65-56 win in boys' non-conference action.
Heartland had a chance to cut into the Timberwolf lead right at the start of the fourth quarter, but turned the ball over allowing the hosts to open a 44-34 advantage.
For the next five and a half minutes the Huskies could only manage to trade baskets with the Timberwolves.
A 3-point shot by Jordan Heinrichs cut the Exeter-Milligan lead to 53-47, but a steal from Cole Nickels, then a basket and charity toss on the foul made it 53-50 and the Heartland fans were showing their appreciation.
Exeter-Milligan got two free throws from Nolan White to go back up 55-50, but another steal and another basket by Nickels cut the margin to just 55-53 with 1:19 to play.
A drive and basket by the Timberwolves' Derek Luzum stretched the lead back to 57-53, but Heartland answered with a trey from Heinrichs following a free throw from Luzum to make it 58-56 with 42.7 seconds to play.
The Timberwolves then closed the game on a 7-0 run as the Huskies could not get the baskets to fall and Exeter-Milligan held on for the win.
In the first half the hosts went out to a 21-12 lead, but Heartland got a buzzer-beater on an inbounds play with 0.3 seconds on the clock from Brent Regier to close the margin to 21-18.
In the second quarter Exeter-Milligan opened the lead to double digits, outscoring the Huskies 16-7 in the quarter to lead 37-25 at the half.
In the third quarter the Huskies out-scored the Timberwolves 9-5 to set up the wild finish to the fourth quarter.
Leading the Timberwolves in scoring was Nolan White with 17, Garrett Pribyl tossed in 15, and Luzum finished with 11.
For Heartland, Heinrichs was charted with 20, Regier added 11 and Nickels finished with nine.
Exeter-Milligan was 12-26 from the charity stripe, while the Huskies finished18-26.
Heartland returns to action tonight hosting Hampton.
Heartland ............ 18 7 9 22—56
Exeter-Milligan ............ 21 16 5 23—65