Effingham Daily News
Braydon Bone picked a great time to pick up 75 percent of his scoring output Friday night.
With Effingham trailing St. Anthony 43-42 with less than 20 seconds remaining, Kevin Daugherty forced a steal, passed to Marcus Robinson, who then found a streaking Bone heading to the basket.
Bone hit the layup while drawing contact, and converted the three-point play to put his team up 45-43 with 12.9 to play. The junior point guard had just four points, but those three proved to be the winners at the St. Anthony Turkey Tournament.
"It's exciting, it's a real special moment," Bone said. "The guys on the team got a steal, they found me at the bottom. I happened to finish, but it was all because of the steal."
Effingham trailed 41-34 with 2:02 left after a Neil Williams layup and looked to be headed to the fifth-place game at the tournament.
Marcus Robinson hit a three, and then following a John Goeckner layup off his own missed free throw, Daugherty nailed a three of his own. Williams was immediately fouled and missed both of his free throws, and Leighton Lark had a layup with 34 seconds to cut the lead to one.
St. Anthony turned it over, but Lark was called for traveling. The Flaming Hearts nearly forced a five-second call, with one referee signaling for a turnover, until a last-second timeout by St. Anthony coach Cody Rincker nixed the turnover.
"I just talked about just finding a way," he said. "You've got to find a way to get open in those situations, you've got to find a way to keep handling the ball and hold on to it if you have to. Can't fault the boys' effort."
Still, the Hearts came through again, getting the turnover and feeding Bone for the game-winning layup. St. Anthony couldn't score, and then Marcus Robinson missed the front end of a one-and-one, only to have Daugherty steal the outlet pass to clinch the win.
The pressure came up huge for Effingham with the Hearts in a huge role, said coach Ron Reed.
"We were able to get some turnovers," he said. "We were hoping that would be a way, if we did get beat on the boards, we could offset it a bit. To their credit, they made a lot of big shots."
The game was close from the opening tip, with neither team leading by more than four points until the fourth quarter.
The lead changed hands on four consecutive possessions early in the quarter, on threes by Lark and Williams and two-pointers by John Goeckner and Kennan Mahaffey.
St. Anthony began to pull away behind Williams, who had nine points of his 11 in the fourth, and looked to put the game away with 3:16 left. With his team already up two, Williams hit a dagger of a 3-pointer and was fouled, hitting the free throw for a four-point play. He'd put them up seven with 2:02 to go with a layup as well.
Reed understands that his team will be playing games like Friday's all season.
"I really think this is how the season's going to be like a lot," he said. "We're going to play a lot of tough teams. There's going to be a lot of tough ballgames."
Williams and Hoelscher each had 11 points to top the Bulldogs and tie for the game high. Goeckner each had nine for St. Anthony.
In addition Lark's game-high 11 points, Daugherty and Isaac Foreman each had seven points and Mahaffey and Robinson had six each.
The Bulldogs played their crosstown rivals as close as possible, and Rincker was happy with the effort, if not the result.
"Gameplan was just find a way," Rincker said. "Play dicsiplined, play tough, play enthusiastic and we did all those things. It's early in the season, third game, and I'm excited to see what the rest of it is going to hold for us."
St. Anthony moves to 1-2 overall and in their tournament. They play Mt. Zion at 4:30 p.m. for fifth. Charleston and Robinson play at 3 p.m., with Belleville Althoff Catholic and Mattoon playing for the title at 7:30 p.m.
Effingham is now 2-1 and takes on Breese Central at 6 p.m. for third place.
Effingham 8 8 8 21 45
St. Anthony 8 10 6 19 43
Effingham: Mahaffey (6 points); Bone (4 points); Robinson (6 points); Wohltman (4 points); Lark (11 points); Daugherty (7 points); Foreman (7 points)
St. Anthony: Williams (11 points); Jansen (2 points); Gibson (2 points); A. Gardewine (6 points); Hoelscher (11 points); Goeckner (7 points); Z. Gardewine (2 points); Rios (2 points)