Wayzata beats Central at the buzzer

Game 1 of my Saturday action takes me to Central to see Wayzata for the 1st time this season. The 1st half sees action go back and forth with Wayzata not being able to make an outside shot (except for Nick Rocca, more on him later). With the score 20-17 Central, coach Ward gets a technical after a Wayzata player got smacked away from the ball. He was really upset with the official and I don't blame him. Central gets 7 of the next 9 to go up 27-19. Central keeps the lead at 35-28 with about 4 minutes left in the half but Wayzata closes to 39-35 at the half. Larry Brown with 14, Dylan Hale with 12. Rocca with 13 at the half with 3 3s. Central is all over the boards in the 1st half.

The teams continue to play back and forth to 51-48 Central with 9:34 in the half. Central extends the lead to 58-51 via 5 Larry Brown points at 7:20. Around this time, Danny Fearing leaves with an apparent ankle injury which hurts Wayzata's inside game. But Wayzata comes back to tie the game at 60 with 4:40 to go thanks to Jarrod Peterson starting to heat up with 5 points in the run and then he gets 4 of the next 6 to make it 66-62 Wayzata. All totaled its a 15-4 Wayzata run. Jordan Larson gets a putback on another Central offensive rebound to pull Central to 66-64 with 2:40 remaining. Hale and Rocca trade 3s and its 69-67 Wayzata at 1:50. Clutch 3 by Rocca as he got it right away after Hale hit his to give the lead back to Central. Brown promptly ties it at 1:38 (69 all). Rocca has a 3 go in and out and Brown rebounds with 1 minute left. It appears Central is going to run down the clock to take their final timeout and setup "the play" for Brown (the one they've used vs North and Washburn late). But Dylan Hale gets the ball and goes to the right baseline and I'm not sure if he somehow got off balance or what, but he throws up a prayer from there (about 15 feet out) and its nothing but net with 19.2 left to give Central a 71-69 lead. Timeout.

During the timeout, I told a fan next to me to look for Nick Rocca to touch it and for Wayzata to go quick so they had a chance at a rebound. I also said don't be surprised if they play for the win on the road. So out of the timeout, Peterson gets a good foul line look but misses and a mad scramble for the rebound ensues. Wayzata dives on the loose ball in front of their bench and gets a timeout with exactly 4 seconds left. Now I'm thinking Nick Rocca all the way. Sure enough they run a triple screen for him to curl from near the ballside block to the top of the key, but Central does a great job switching out on it and Rocca is blanketed but its one of Central's small guards who switches out and Rocca is 6'4 so he gets off a tough 3 over the guard at the horn and down it goes from the same spot that North hit the buzzer to beat Central in January. 72-71 Wayzata wins a terrific game.

Great call by coach Ward to get his top player in a position to win it. No fault to Central's D on the play either, the defender got there with him and Rocca hit the tough shot. Rocca finishes with 24 to lead the Trojans. Peterson with 15 and he was big in the 2nd half. Look for Freshman Eric Robertson to be a nice replacement for Rocca next year as Wayzata loses 4 senior starters but Peterson and reserve Eren Cur return with a nice JV group. Wayzata improves to 15-2 with their only losses to Minnetonka and Osseo.

For Central, Brown with 27, Hale with 23. Jordan Larson with a nice game for Central as well with 12 points and he was a factor on the offensive glass. LeDarian Horton rounds out the Central scoring with 9. Central falls to 14-5, but 2 of those are buzzer beaters and 2 more are a 3 point loss to Como Park and a 12 point loss to Hopkins in the Joe Hutton Christmas tournament at Hamline.

No comments:

Post a Comment

Have a different take than mine? You can provide your take here.