Rebels top Cards with wild finish

Published 1:05 am Friday, January 23, 2009

A strange turn of events saw the Southland boys basketball team survive in an 81-76 overtime win over LeRoy/Ostrander Thursday in Adams.

The Cardinals trailed by 15 in the second half, but stormed back to take a 57-56 lead when Josh Rowe, who finished with 33 points and 14 rebounds, scored his 1,000th point of his career.

The Cards (6-5 overall) went on take a four-point lead with 37 seconds left in the game, but Southland’s Sam Noterman hit a trey to make it a one-point game.

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After L/O, which hit all six of it’s free throws in the last two minutes, hit two free throws to go up 64-61, the Rebels had one more chance.

First they missed a three, but Noterman pulled down the long rebound and hoisted another three as time expired it banked in to force overtime.

“Dylan Mackey was right there with his arms extended, but it still went in,” L/O head coach Jason Herber said.

In overtime, the Rebels (4-6 overall) jumped out to a 10-point lead before the Cards pulled within three. But Southland made 7-of-9 from the free throw line in the extra session after making just 4-of-12 freebies in regulation.

Mitch Nagele scored all six of his points in overtime for Southland.

“Even when things looked pretty bleak late in the game, we kept coming at them,” Southland head coach Jon Thalberg said.

As for his Rebels blowing a 15-point lead in regulation, Thalberg said it was a simple mistake.

“Instead of hitting the kill switch, we kind of put it in cruise control,” he said.

Southland stopped the game after Rowe’s 1,000th point to recognize him.

“It was a classy move by Southland. Some teams will make you call a timeout,” Herber said. “I’ve been here 11 years and this is one of the best games I’ve been involved in.”

Southland scoring: Chris May, 23; Sam Noterman, 17; Alan May, 16; Josh Jax, 8; Zach Heimer, 7; Clint Bergene, 4; free throws: 52 percent (11-for-21)

LeRoy/Ostrander scoring: Josh Rowe, 33; Michael Knight, 21; Mark Miller, 8; Dylan Mackey, 8; Kirk Nelson, 6; free throws: 72 percent (16-for-22)