DuBois tops Altoona, 48-40, in OT for program's first playoff win since 2000
Thursday, February 23, 2012
KNOCKING IT DOWN — DuBois’ Tanner Gooden (5) hits a jump shot over Altoona’s Danny Moyer (21) Wednesday during a District 6-9 Class AAAA quarterfinal game at Bald Eagle Area High School. Gooden scored 16 points to help the Beavers win 48-40 in overtime. (Photo by Christopher Shannon)
WINGATE - The DuBois Beavers are moving on in the District 6-9 Class AAAA playoffs after winning a 48-40 overtime thriller against Altoona Wednesday night at Bald Eagle Area High School.
The tension was heavy at the end of the fourth quarter, but it quickly lifted in overtime when the Beavers scored the first eight points to take control.
Nate Liddle, held scoreless for four quarters, scored the first two baskets of overtime and Tanner Gooden hit 5 of 6 free throws in the extra four minutes to seal the win for the Beavers. Nate Avery also enjoyed a strong second half and overtime, scoring nine points after being held to just three in the first half while missing most of it with two fouls.
It is DuBois' first postseason win in 12 years. In 2000, the Beavers beat the Punxsutawney Chucks for the District 9 Class AAAA title on their way to a 19-7 season,
The Beavers are 17-6 and will play Mifflin County at 1 p.m. Saturday at BEA in the semifinals.
The other semifinal features top-seeded State College and Central Mountain. The Wildcats advanced Wednesday with a 45-36 win over Hollidaysburg.
Beavers head coach Scott Creighton was understandably a happy man.
"This team, these kids, have just kept meeting challenges all season. It feels really good," Creighton said. "The kids have trusted us when sometimes they didn't always know why they should. They deserve this success."
For Creighton, it has to be gratifying as well.
He took over a program that had just five wins in 2006-07 and 2007-08.
His first year, 2008-09, the Beavers went 4-18. Two years ago, the Beavers went 7-15, then 9-13 last season, including a 4-6 mark in the District 9 League.
This year, the Beavers went 8-2 in the league for their first undisputed title since 1990.
"I knew it was going to be a challenge, but the staff has put in so many extra hours, the kids have worked hard and listed to what we've tried to teach, it's been a team effort the whole way and there aren't too many better feelings," Creighton said.
The game was close the whole way.
Altoona's largest lead was six points, 33-27, with 6:12 to play after Manny Span scored off an offensive rebound.
DuBois, with the exception of its final margin of victory, held its largest lead at 17-11 with 4:14 left in the first half when Kyle Hoffer scored on a jump hook.
After Altoona (7-16) led 33-27, Gooden made a huge play to keep the Beavers believing they could win.
Gooden missed a shot and Altoona rebounded the ball. But, Gooden stepped into a passing lane for a steal and layup to make it 33-29.
More than a minute later and two DuBois timeouts, Mark Felix hit a 3-pointer with 4:10 left to cut the deficit to one point, 33-32.
Altoona got the lead back to three when Deshae Lee hit two free throws with 3:03. Lee didn't do much else though as he finished with 10 points while being harassed by Avery and his teammates.
Lee scored a total of 50 points in Altoona's last two games, both wins over Central Mountain and Bishop Guilfoyle.
Then Avery hit a crucial 3-pointer 15 seconds later from the top of the key and gave a little fist pump as the game was tied at 35-35.
Gooden drove and scored with 1:22 left to make it 37-35, but Altoona guard Danny Moyer stopped and popped to tie it at 37-37.
In the last 16 seconds, there were three timeouts as both coaches tried to come up with a winning combination.
The Beavers had the last shot as Felix missed a 3-pointer just before the buzzer.
But the miss did nothing to stop the Beavers, who looked like the team that wanted the win more in overtime.
Avery hounded Lee into a miss on Altoona's first possession, the Gooden drove the lane and dished off to Liddle for his first points of the game with 2:28 left.
Altoona missed again, but got an offensive rebound. The Mountain Lions success was very brief, though, as Avery intercepted a pass.
With 1:27 left, Gooden pushed the ball upcourt and found Liddle in the paint. He went over a Mountain Lion for another basket and it was 41-37.
Liddle followed with a defensive rebound off a Moyer miss, got the ball to Gooden, who was fouled.
The foul sent the Beavers into the one-and-one bonus and Gooden hit both to make it 43-37 with 1:12 left.
With 57 seconds left, Moyer missed a 3 and Gooden was back at the line for more free throws, hitting both, to make it 45-37 with 51 seconds left.
With 36 seconds left, Lee hit twice from the stripe to make it 45-39.
The Beavers called timeout before the inbounds, and Creighton had the right call as the Beavers broke the Altoona press with Avery getting a layup with 28 seconds left to make it 47-39 and seal the win.
The Beavers closed the first two quarters with two big 3-pointers.
Felix's trey in the first quarter beat the buzzer to knot the score at 11-11.
Then Jon Mohney hit one with two seconds left in the first half to give the Beavers a 20-18 lead.
"I was so happy for Jon when he hit that shot," Creighton said. "But that's the thing about this team. Tanner is our leader, our glue, but when one man isn't on, there is always someone to step up. And the other thing about our kids, they don't let bad things pile up until they can't overcome them."
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Reported by Scott Shindledecker, C-E Sports Editor. E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org
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