A diving save, some physical collisions and one final, buzzer-beating highlight.
A wild game between two of the area’s best teams deserved a wild end – and it got it.
Laney had the ball with 11.8 seconds left and the game tied. JaShawn Brooks then saved the ball and the ball found its way to an open Nick Myers, who got the pass and then calmly hit the short jumper to give the Wildcats a 62-60 win over Aquinas during the MLK Hardwood Classic at Evans on Monday night.
“I was hesitant to shoot, but I had a good shootaround,” Myers said. “So when I shot it, I knew it was going in.”
It was just the second basket of the game for Myers after each squad depended on two scorers to keep it close.
The Irish leaned on Ahmed Hill and Michael Scott, who combined for 44 points. Hill had 24 and Scott had 20.
Scott drilled four 3-pointers in the game, but his best, most intelligent play came when he didn’t score.
After the guard made a steal, Scott led a two-on-one break. With Hill trailing, Scott laid the ball up to allow Hill to follow and slam it home to give the Irish a 55-48 lead in the fourth quarter.
But the Wildcats, who got 18 points from Zephaniah Jasper, clawed back after Scott fouled out with 2:10 remaining.
Brooks was Laney's hero a few times, scoring 13 of his 25 points in the fourth quarter. In fact, Brooks scored 11 of Laney’s 13 points during a crucial fourth-period stretch. He was also one of four Wildcats to hit a 3.
Near the game’s conclusion, after Brooks cut and scored from a Curtis Hightower pass to give Laney a 60-59 lead, Hill drove and was fouled.
The junior made one of two foul shots to notch the game at 60.
That set up Laney’s winning score, with Myers’ make getting in right before the buzzer for the young Wildcats.
“Through hard work and patience, good things will come,” Wildcats coach Jerry Hunter said.