ST. ELMO —
The finish was set up perfectly for Beecher City.
Brady Barnes scored his only field goal of the game to give the Eagles an eight-point lead with 2:09 left against St. Elmo/Brownstown, but Beecher City left the door open one too many times. It cost them, as St. Elmo/Brownstown won 52-46 in overtime and advanced to the finals of the St. Elmo Holiday Tournament.
Beecher City's Adam Doty missed two free throws on an intentional foul with a little over a minute to go, but made a layup on his team's next possession to make the game 41-35. It could've been 43-35.
SEB's defense forced a five-second violation, down three points, and capitalized with a Levi Maxey 3-pointer to the tie the game. The basket was Maxey's second on consecutive possessions.
Both teams failed on their final possessions of the fourth quarter. Beecher City tried setting up an isolation play for Barnes, but he dribbled it off his foot and a jump ball gave SEB the ball with two seconds left. Maxey failed to get a shot off before the buzzer.
But St. Elmo/Brownstown made the comeback, taking a 41-41 game into overtime. Good news, if you ask SEB head coach Greg Feezel.
“I've always believed the team that comes back and ties it up has the momentum,” Feezel said. “We scored a couple times and then made them chase us.”
SEB won 52-46, making 10-of-12 free throws in overtime after Landon Feezel started the scoring for the team with a layup.
Beecher City clung to life, despite two missed free throws by Jacob Kenter in a 44-41 game.
Doty made a 3-pointer with less than a minute to go and forced a turnover on the ensuing possession; however, he attempted a long inbounds pass that sailed over the intended target and into the Beecher City bench.
“Things like that can't happen in those situations,” Beecher City head coach Jason Eirhart said. “As many good things as Adam does, he can do some silly things on top of it. Our guys have to go to the ball and get open.”
The errant pass turned out to be the last mistake Beecher City made in the six-point loss and that puts them in the third-place game of the St. Elmo Holiday Tournament, against Okaw Valley today.
SEB advances to the title game against Altamont — the same championship matchup as each of the last two years. St. Elmo/Brownstown won both.
“I feel like we should've won that game,” Eirhart said. “We did some dumb things down the stretch that we hadn't done the whole game. It cost us.”
Eirhart's team found a way to put itself in a position to win the game, despite only five points from Barnes. The post player led the team with 21 points in a win over Ramsey two nights ago.
St. Elmo/Brownstown double-teamed Barnes from the first possession to the last of the game. Feezel said his team had no other choice.
“We just kind of gambled,” Feezel said. “I figured it we went straight up man-to-man, Brady would have 30 (points). He's still one of the best players in this tournament, if not the best.”
Eirhart said he knows Barnes would've made the game-winning shot with 14 seconds left had he only had one defender on him, instead of two, because the play Beecher City ran was a common one that Barnes typically scores on.
The ball bounced off of Barnes foot, which was just another sign of an uncharacteristic night for him.
“I thought he kind of got disconnected from the game,” Eirhart said. “It was his body language, I could tell. There were a couple times, even when he had an opportunity for a rebound he wasn't ready for it.”
In Friday night's earlier game, Ramsey beat Mulberry Grove to advance to Saturday's consolation championship game against Cowden-Herrick at 5 p.m.
South Central will play Mulberry Grove at 3:30 p.m., while Beecher City plays Okaw Valley at 6:30 p.m. and SEB tries to defend its title against Altamont at 8 p.m.
Alex McNamee can be reached at 217-347-7151, ext. 123, or email@example.com.
Beecher City 8 7 11 15 5 46
St. Elmo/Brownstown 4 10 15 12 11 52
Beecher City: Gardner 7, Doty 11, Bales 5, Lagerhausen 9, Rexroad 3, Kenter 4, Barnes 5, Harder 2
SEB: M Maxey 3, L Maxey 20, Behrends 19, Smithson 4, Feezel 6
ST. ELMO —
The finish was set up perfectly for Beecher City.
Teutopolis advances to 4th straight Super-Sectional
Teutopolis couldn't have started each of the first three quarters any better.
The Wooden Shoes Shoes took an 11-0 lead in the first five minutes of the first quarter and started the second and third quarters on 7-0 and 9-0 runs, respectively.
Their third-quarter outburst gave them the 17-point lead that was too much for Greenville to come back from. The Shoes won 64-53 to advance to Tuesday's Class 2A Carbondale Super-Sectional at Southern Illinois University. It's Teutopolis' fourth-straight trip to the Super-Sectional round.
Maroons make history
With just more than 12 minutes left, Dieterich's offense was scuffling and the Movin' Maroons trailed St. Anthony by 11, 34-23.
Then Alex Bohnhoff kick started the Maroons' offense with a pair of 3-pointers, and Dieterich completed a big comeback to down their NTC rivals 58-51 and win its first-ever sectional title
Zerrusen reflects on 1K milestone, career
Josie Zerrusen used to be a handful for her Effingham coaches, but turned into a headache for opponents by the end her senior season.
Zerrusen, the only one of four Hearts seniors to reach 1,000 points in her career this season, was preoccupied with scoring points as a sophomore on a 20-10 team in 2012.
But the Hearts improved as Zerrusen matured, recording 54 wins in the last two seasons, including a school-record 28 this season and a regional championship. Zerrusen grew up by changing her attitude and refusing to take summers off.
All-NTC showdown set at sectionals
At least one area team will play Monday at Southern Illinois University for Super-Sectionals. Teutopolis is looking to make it two.
Tonight will mark the end of the road for either St. Anthony (22-10) or Dieterich (22-8), as the NTC rivals clash for the Class 1A Red Hill Sectional championship. A win would be Dieterich’s first-ever sectional crown, and it would be the first for St. Anthony since 2001.
Teutopolis (20-9) is looking to advance to the Super-Sectional round for the fourth-straight season and is playing for a sectional title for the fifth-straight year. The Wooden Shoes take on Greenville for the Class 2A Vandalia Sectional title.
Olney ends Effingham's season
Effingham battled offensive woes in waves this season and found ways to win almost 80 percent of the time, but not on Wednesday.
Olney, one of the Hearts' 20 victims this year, ended Effingham's season with a 35-32 win in the Salem Regional, surviving a poor shooting night as well.
Dieterich advances in convincing fashion
The Dieterich Movin' Maroons used a January loss to Patoka to motivate themselves Wednesday night at the Class 1A Red Hill Sectional.
It was more successful than they ever could have hoped for, as Dieterich stomped the Patoka Warriors 61-39 and advanced to Friday's sectional final against St. Anthony.
St. Anthony edges Oblong 72-69
BRIDGEPORT — A rare miss by Oblong’s Koert Mehler made the most noise.
Mehler heaved a 75-foot, full-court shot that barely rimmed out to send the game to overtime; instead, St. Anthony (22-10) survived 72-69 to advance to Friday’s Class 1A Red Hill Sectional championship.
Mette leads Wooden Shoes past Breese Central
Breese Central simply has to be getting sick of the Teutopolis Wooden Shoes.
Teutopolis moved to 4-1 in its last five games against Breese Central, and knocked out the Cougars at sectionals for the second straight year with a 63-40 win Tuesday night at the Class 2A Vandalia Sectional. If that wasn’t enough, the Lady Shoes ended Breese Central’s season in girls basketball last week as well.
Neoga's Romack heading to Lincoln Land
Neoga coach Ted Kerner praised his ace pitcher Tyler Romack's ability to read players and quickly learn their tendencies on the mound.
St. Anthony's Walsh commits to be a Cobra
Makayla Walsh made it official Friday afternoon, as the St. Anthony Bulldogs' shortstop signed to play softball at Parkland College next season.
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