Boys basketball: Hall 46 Princeton 44
SPRING VALLEY — The Princeton Tigers were hoping to avoid history repeating itself when visiting the Hall Red Devils Tuesday night.
The last time these two rivals met was a low scoring affair in January with Hall's Sean Riordan delivering a 3-point shot to help seal the deal near the end of the contest, resulting in a Hall 38-35 win.
This time the Big Blue grabbed a lead they kept for the majority of the game, only to see Chance Resetich drain a big 3-pointer at :05 remaining to give the Red Devils their first lead of the game and the winning score of 46-44.
"I wasn't making a lot of shots since I got hurt," Resetich said. "They just told me to get my confidence back and get more shots up, and that one happened to go in. That helped boost my confidence a lot right there."
"When it left his hands, I'll be honest, I didn't think it was going in, he shot the ball way too high but it swished right in," Hall coach Mike Filippini said. "I told him before we went in 'you've got to hit one for us' and he did."
Princeton ran up to a 10-4 lead early in the game until Brant Vanaman, who led all scorers with 14 points, sunk back to back treys to bring Hall back to a 10-10 tie with under three minutes left. Koel Hjertstedt (6) and Christian Parry (7) responded for the Tigers to gain a 14-10 first quarter lead.
One noticeable absence from the Princeton bench was point guard Josh Reinhardt, one of the Tiger's usual scoring threats, a "coach's decision," according to Tiger coach Michael Fredericks. Fortunately for the Tigers, Brandon Haring (9) and Beck Robbins (8) stepped up to help keep PHS in the lead at 28-24 by the end of the half.
Tiger points leader Garrett Allen (11), like Vanaman for Hall, got all of his scoring in the first half.
"We executed on the offense pretty well," Fredericks said. "We played tough."
The third quarter saw the emergence of Kyle Duever (9) as a force under the goal, both in scoring and in drawing shooting fouls. However, he was 3-7 at the charity stripe, with his coach hoping that wouldn't come back to haunt them.
"We didn't shoot free throws very well in our own gym," Filippini said. "But we got some huge rebounds when we needed to."
However, Jimmy DeAngelo (10) made four critical free throws to bring the game to a 40-40 tie then a Hall 42-40 lead with three minutes left in the game. Beck Robbins answered back with a three pointer to give the lead back to the Tigers, 43-42.
Free throws became important again when Duever and Robbins each went 1-2 to keep the score at a 1-point difference, 44-43.
Then came the Red Devils down the court with the Tiger pressure on, and Resetich took his chance, getting a pass from DeAngelo and lofting a high 3-pointer that swished in with five seconds remaining to give Hall a 46-44 lead they would keep to win, to the thunderous approval of the Hall bench and fans.
"I give our kids a lot of credit for hanging in there," Filippini said. "It didn't look good, we were down. We'd get it to one point or a tie, then they'd score, but we just kept fighting."
"All in all, I thought it was a solid effort by the Tigers," Fredericks said. "We had a chance to win at the end and that's all we can ask for."
Hall (19-6, 8-1) will be home again on Friday night to take on the Bureau Valley Storm, while Princeton (12-10, 5-6) will host the St. Bede Bruins at Prouty Gym.
• Hall won the sophomore game as well, 59-55.