Boys basketball: Aurora Central comes up short at the buzzer
By Mike Knapp For Sun-Times Media February 12, 2013 10:18PM
Updated: February 12, 2013 11:12PM
Everything went as planned, right up until the end.
Aurora Central had just under five seconds to go the length of the court for the game-winning basket Tuesday night against Nazareth Academy, and everything was going the way the play had been drawn up. Jacob May’s long inbounds pass to Anthony Andujar was true, the speedy guard got into the frontcourt and dished it to Sean Harreld, one of the area’s best outside shooters.
But Harreld’s shot from the deep right corner at the buzzer just rimmed out, and instead John Bonk’s layup on the other end was the go-ahead bucket in the Roadrunners’ 65-64 win.
The Nazareth defense rotated to the junior guard when he first received the pass, but he got free with a dribble and had a look at the basket. It just didn’t go in this time.
“He (coach Nate Drye) drew it up and we executed it, but you’ve got to hit it,” said Harreld, who finished with seven points. “I just missed it.”
The Chargers had come back from eight points down in the third quarter, and a 19-5 run over the course of 7½ minutes gave ACC a 56-50 lead with just over five minutes to play. Nazareth came back to tie the game and eventually the lead changed hands three times in the final minute as Phil Schuetz hit four free throws on the Chargers’ end, and Tim Kuckaillis (11 points) and Bonk (23 points) each hit a pair for the Roadrunners.
But the difference came in the Chargers coming away empty on their last two possessions, as Zach Flint missed a free throw with 12 seconds to go that preceded Bonk’s layup.
Overall the Chargers shot the ball well, making 24 of their 52 attempts from the floor and 12 of 13 free throws, but the end of the game was a representation of the Chargers’ night as they battled with turnovers and some stretches of the game where they struggled to score.
“We shot ourselves in the foot, we were doing a nice job spreading it out and getting buckets, but then we had some turnovers down the stretch and took some bad shots to let them back in,” Drye said. “We could never get the separation we wanted. We didn’t make enough plays down the stretch to win the ballgame.”
Schuetz led the Chargers with a game-high 26 points, while Flint added nine.