Local Sports, Sports, University

Buccaneers knock off Hawks in overtime, 60-55, in section semifinal

MORGANTOWN – It may not have been March, but there was plenty of madness on Tuesday.

The University boys’ basketball team, the Class AAAA No. 10 ranked team, dropped a 60-55 sectional contest to visiting Buckhannon-Upshur. The loss ends the season for UHS.

“We didn’t deserve to win that game,” UHS head coach Joe Schmidle said. “It’s that simple. If you don’t show up, you don’t practice hard – we haven’t practiced hard for a week. That’s what you get.”

University (13-10) started off with a cold first quarter as the Buccaneers (7-16) held an 11-9 advantage after the first period. However, the Hawks appeared to get the ship righted in the second quarter thanks to James Fortney-Garbert as he scored seven of his team-high 21 points in the second quarter and his inside move midway through the quarter gave UHS a 21-12 lead.

But the Bucs wouldn’t go away as they slowly chipped away at the UHS lead and constantly kept the contest close.

University used a press defense that caused B-U issues in the third quarter to build a 33-24 lead but the Hawks struggled with foul trouble the entire game.

“We have a whole toolbox of press breakers and we don’t run any of them worth two cents,” B-U head coach Jason Westfall said. “We went to a different personnel on our press break and tried to use our height to break it that well. (UHS) presses so well, it’s hard to do anything against it. Thank God they stopped pressing us to be real about it.”

Schmidle said his team had to stop pressing because they couldn’t play the aggressive defense without fouling.

“We went from three fouls to eight fouls in a matter of 60 seconds,” Schmidle said. “Just a poor execution on defense. We were sloppy.”

The Bucs took the lead in the fourth quarter when Jerin Westfall hit a pair of free throws for a 49-48 lead. A free throw by Carter Zuliani gave B-U a 50-48 lead but UHS was able to tie the game at 50 when Rafael Barcinas hit a pair of free throws with 24 seconds left.

University took a 52-50 lead with 11 seconds left when Demarcus Bandy was fouled after stealing a ball at halfcourt. Bandy hit the two free throws, but the Bucs were able to tie the game went Zuliani hit a basket inside off an assist from Jerin Westfall.

In overtime, B-U never trailed as it hit 6-of-10 free throws to ice the contest. The Bucs were able to beat UHS after the Hawks beat the Bucs 68-48 in the season opener.

“It wasn’t overlooking anyone on my part,” Schmidle said. “Maybe it was, I hope they remember this feeling and what happens when you overlook opponents.”

Barcinas added 11 points for the Hawks while Landon Cool scored 10. Zuliani and Zack Calef-Boring each scored 13 for B-U while Jerin Westfall added 12.


              1            2            3            4            OT         F

B-U        11          8            16          17          8            60

UHS       9            12          20          11          3            55

Buckhannon-Upshur (7-16) — Calef-Boring 5 3-3 13, Williams 1 1-2 3, Jev. Westfall 1 0-0 3, Strader 4 0-0 9, Zuliani 3 7-16 13, Ja. Westfall 2 3-6 7, Jer. Westfall 3 4-4 12. Totals: 22 18-31 60.

University (13-10) — Coleman 1 0-1 2, Cool 4 0-0 10, Bandy 2 2-6 6, Barcinas 2 6-7 11, Thomas 1 0-0 2, Fortney-Garbart 8 3-3 21, Ford 1 0-0 3. Totals 19 11-17 55.

3-Pointers – B-U: 4 (Jer. Westfall 2, Jev. Westfall, Strader) UHS: 6 (Cool 2, Fortney-Garbert 2, Barcinas, Ford).

TWEET @DomPostSports