No. 8 Gibbons gets past Towson Catholic Davalli's layups in OT boost the Crusaders

Boys basketball

January 06, 1996|By Bob Clark | Bob Clark,SPECIAL TO THE SUN

Cardinal Gibbons senior Josh Davalli, who had connected on only 3 of 14 shots from the field in regulation, went inside for two crucial layups in overtime to lead the No. 8 host Crusaders past No. 20 Towson Catholic, 67-61, in Catholic League action last night.

Tied at 60 after four quarters, Towson Catholic (8-4) scored the first point of overtime on a foul shot by freshman guard Steven Johnson, but that was the Owls' only point in the extra period.

Gibbons (10-4 overall and 1-1 in the league) pulled even at 61 on a free throw by Mike Simmons (12 points) with just over three minutes left in the four-minute period.

Then Davalli, who had been averaging more than 23 points a game but had been limited to 11 by the tough Owl defense in regulation, put the Crusaders ahead to stay with a driving layup with 2:35 left.

After a missed shot by the Owls, Gibbons worked down the clock for over a minute before Davalli drove the lane and missed from in close. But he regained the ball underneath and put in another layup for a 65-61 lead with 59 seconds left.

"That was a big-time play," said Gibbons' coach Bryan Moorhouse. "He just wasn't going to let us lose tonight. This was our fifth overtime game of the season and I think our experience helped at the end."

Two free throws by Keith Phoebus, who along with Davalli finished with a game-high 15 points, finished the Crusader scoring with 30 seconds to go.

Towson Catholic was led by senior center Fred Lewis and freshman guard Lafonte Johnson with 14 points each.

Trailing throughout most of the game, Gibbons took a 60-58 lead on a fast-break basket by Phoebus with 42 seconds left in the fourth quarter. The Owls knotted the score as Lafonte Johnson hit a short jumper in the lane to set up the overtime.

"We didn't use real good judgment at the end," said Owls coach Mike Daniel.

The Crusaders came out cold from the field and fell behind 8-4 midway in the first quarter. The Owls still led 14-11 with just over a minute left in that quarter when baskets by Mike Simmons and James Urban gave Gibbons a brief (15-14) lead.

A follow-up basket by Damian Hocker moved Towson Catholic back on top, 16-15, at the buzzer of a quarter in which Gibbons hit on only seven of 24 from the field.

The Owls opened the second quarter by running off a 12-2 spurt keyed by the inside play of Lewis, who had 11 first-half points. That spurt built an 11-point lead for the Owls with 4:45 left in the half.

But Gibbons rallied after that, scoring the last 10 points of the half on baskets by five players to wipe out a 32-22 deficit and pull even at 32 at intermission.

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