It came down to a miss, as most basketball games do.
But it wasn’t a missed shot. It was a missed rebound.
Oak Hill’s failure to run down a loose ball after a missed shot allowed Brooke Point (Va.) post Phillip Holmes to grab the ball and get to the basket where he was fouled.
He calmly made both free throws with 12.5 seconds left to tie the score at 57-57 and force overtime.
“I think that was the key to the game,” Oak Hill coach Fred Ferri said. “We force their point guard (Cee’s Carter) into a bad shot and we can’t get the rebound. And they do. The ball was there and nobody went after it. They got it. We didn’t get it.”
In overtime, Mario Gills made a three-pointer and the Black Hawks never trailed.
Down one, Class AA No. 2 Oak Hill was whistled for an intentional foul with 2:15 left and Carter made the second free. Gills then hit a shot to make it a two-possession game and Brook Point went on to defeat the defending Class AA state champion Red Devils 67-60.
Carter was a three-point machine with six treys (Brooke Point had 12 threes and 12 twos in the game) and 29 points to lead Brook Point, which was coming off a one-point overtime loss to rival Stafford (coached by former Valley and Midland Trail coach Steve Spicer) Thursday night.
Gills added 18.
“Those are our two sophomore guards,” said Brook Point coach Joey Kania, a Gauley Bridge native and former West Virginia Tech standout. “I thought Cee’s played really well. He was focused. That’s probably a career-high night for him. He ran the team with confidence and he showed up big for us tonight.”
Oak Hill all-stater and one of the top players in the state, Kalif Wright, had 32 points and 14 rebounds, including his 1,000th career point. Deandre Leonard added 13 points and six boards.
Only three other players scored for Oak Hill, which was without starting guards Thomas Booth (collapsed lung) and Kyle Colon (illness).
Oak Hill led most of the night as Kania tried to find an antidote for stopping Wright. He subbed Holmes and Jalen Cotton in and out to try to defend the 6-foot-6 Wright, who had 22 points after halftime.
But Oak Hill got just five points from players other than Wright or Leonard after the half. In fact, Wright had all but 10 of Oak Hill’s points after the half.
“He’s a horse,” Kania said. “We tried to keep a fresh body on him. Sometimes he was just unstoppable underneath. That’s a real good team and Fred does a good job.”
Oak Hill led 28-24 at halftime and led 53-49 with 3:40 left after 10 straight points from Wright.
The game was tied at 53 and 55 before a pair of Wright free throws, after he rebounded a missed free throw by Leonard with 32 seconds left, gave Oak Hill the lead.
That set the stage for Holmes’ key offensive board.
Oak Hill missed an open shot as time expired that would have won the game.
“I’m not disappointed in our effort at all,” Ferri said. “We gave effort. But I was disappointed in our decision-making. And I was disappointed in our rebounding. I don’t know what the numbers are, but I would be surprised if they didn’t kill us on the offensive glass.”
Wright wasted little time scoring his 1,000th career point, getting it with the Devils’ first two of the year on a pair of free throws. The game was halted and Wright received a standing ovation from the capacity crowd at the Jim Lilly Center.
— E-mail: demorrison@
Brooke Point (Va.) 67,
Oak Hill 60 (OT)
Brooke Point (2-1)
Cee’s Carter 10 3-4 29, Mario Gills 7 0-2 18, Ryan Corp 2 0-0 5, Shawn Austin 1 0-0 3, Phillip Holmes 0 4-4 4, Jalen Cotton 4 0-0 8. Totals: 24 7-10 67.
Oak Hill (0-1)
DeAndré Leonard 4 3-5 13, Kalif Wright 12 7-10 32, Kam Carroll 3 0-0 6, Zach Nibert 2 0-0 6, Javonne Staunton 0 0-0 0, Noah Smith 1 0-0 3.. Totals: 22 10-15 60.
BP 11 13 18 15 10 — 67
OH 15 13 12 17 3 — 60
Three-point goals: BP: 12 (Carter 6, Gills 4, Corp 1, Austin 1); OH: 6 (Leonard 2, Wright, Nibert 2, Smith); Fouled out: None.