Boys: Sequoyah 57, Cascia Hall 53
The Sequoyah boys basketball team earned a hard-fought 57-53 triumph over Cascia Hall Friday night.
“The game was close the last time we played them at their place. They have a good team, and they played their game and controlled us tonight,” Sequoyah coach Jay Herrin said. “We wanted to push the ball and play with tempo, but we weren’t able to accomplish that. On a night when we didn’t play as good as we hoped, we were still able to get a win.”
Sequoyah never trailed in the game, but the Indians could never seem to put away the Commandos until the final buzzer. The home team held a 30-24 advantage at halftime and built a 48-37 lead after three quarters. The Indians even scored the first two points of the fourth quarter to build their largest lead of the game at 51-37.
The Commandos did not falter, however, as they embarked on an 11-0 run from the 7:16 mark to the 3:48 mark that saw them get within three at 51-48. A Zach Parish layup at 2:20 ended the Sequoyah drought, but Michael Bloomfield connected on a three-point basket at 1:44 and Derek Cole tied the game at 53-53 with a layup with just 57 seconds to play.
Parish drove to the bucket on the Indians’ next possession and earned a foul with 28 seconds left on the clock. He calmly converted both free throws to put the home team back up two, and he then blocked the game-tying attempt by Adam Outlaw with two seconds remaining. Elijah Tucker capped the victory with two insurance free throws after getting fouled on the rebound.
“We had some guys step up and make some big free throws down the stretch. We also had a big defensive stop on Cascia’s final possession,” Herrin said. “Of our 16 games this season, all of them have been close except for three. Our kids are used to having to play all four quarters to win. We’re getting battle-tested and hopefully ready for the playoffs.”
In the battle of No. 5’s, it was Cascia Hall’s Bryce Carter (21 points) who outdueled Sequoyah’s Caisen Green (18), but Green would get the last laugh as his team would earn the victory. Tucker was the only other Indian in double figures, as he finished with 10 points. Patrick Kaltenbacher aided the cause for the Commandos with 10 points of his own.
Sequoyah shot 47.6 percent (20-for-42) from the field, 35.3 percent (6-for-17) from downtown and 78.6 percent (11-for-14) at the free-throw line. Cascia Hall shot 51.2 percent (22-for-43) from the field, 27.3 percent (3-for-11) from downtown and 54.5 percent (6-for-11) at the line.
Both teams had 24 rebounds, and they were dead even in points in the paint (24-24), turnovers (14-14), assists (11-11), and bench points (7-7). The Commandos held a 20-12 edge in points off turnovers.
Sequoyah star B.J. Leach was seen getting looked at after the game, and Herrin said Leach played at 60 percent Tuesday night due to an injury.
“He has an issue with his shooting hand right now that we have to get checked out,” he said. “I appreciate his effort gutting it out the way he did, but that definitely affected his play.”