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Thoughts, news and notes from the sports staff of The Saratogian newspaper, located in historic Saratoga Springs, New York. The gang in the corner office on Lake Avenue give you the post-game wrap-ups, news and notes from the games we cover and opinions about the sports we read about every day.

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

Saratoga JV boys opening overtime act worth catching

Even before the Saratoga Springs boys varsity squad took to the floor Tuesday night, the junior varsity squad lit up the Blue Streak’s gymnasium with a thrilling 62-59 overtime win over Columbia for their second win of the season.

I admit I wasn’t there for the entire game, but entered with the score knotted at 43-43 and the drama was far from over.

Saratoga’s Mike McElroy sank two free throws to give Saratoga a 47-45 lead, but Columbia’s Christian Brown answered with a three at the other end for a 48-47 Blue Devils lead. Columbia could have put the contest away when Matthew Elliot sank two of his three free throw attempts, but a Blue Devils player was whistled for a technical foul after being called for an over-the-back infraction.

Saratoga knotted the game at 50 apiece courtesy of the second free throw by Jack Morrow on the technical foul and two sunk by freshman Shane Tracy. Morrow dribbled the baseline and scored with 57 seconds left, but Columbia’s Tyler Hart hit a jumper in the lane to tie the game at 52 with 38 seconds left.

McElroy was again money from the charity stripe, hitting a pair with 26.8 seconds left, but Blue Devils sophomore Corey Gibson sent the game into overtime, hitting from underneath with nine seconds left, 54-54.

McElroy opened the four-minute extra session with a jumper, answered by Columbia’s Hart and Saratoga’s Morrow hit his ninth shot from the floor for the 58-56 go-ahead bucket at the three minute mark.

Blue Streak sophomore Dan Keehn made up for his two missed free throws in overtime, driving the baseline with 2:24 left to give Saratoga a 60-57 lead. Columbia’s Brown wouldn’t go away, hitting a jumper with 1:22 left, but sophomore Greg Ronayne and Tracy both hit the front end of two-shot free throws to seal the deal.

Morrow finished with an eye-popping 21 points followed by McElroy and Ronayne with 11 each.

“We’ve lost a lot of games like this one,” Saratoga junior varsity coach David Zeh said. “They guys played hard and made key free throws in the clutch.

“McElroy, (Shane) Tracy and (Jack) Morrow all hit big shots,” Zeh said. “Hitting our free throws made this win possible. The kids played their hearts out.”

- Stan Hudy



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