No. 2 St. Frances withstands Mount St. Joseph in OT, 65-63 Karcher banks in winner with 5 seconds remaining

January 29, 1996|By Derek Toney | Derek Toney,SPECIAL TO THE SUN

After his team was dominated by Cardinal Gibbons on its home court Friday night, Mount St. Joseph coach Pat Clatchey stood in disgust in the Gaels' locker room.

Fewer than 48 hours later, the No. 14 Gaels did a complete turnaround, taking No. 2 St. Frances into overtime before falling 65-63 in a Catholic League game yesterday.

"One of the big things was how were we going to bounce back mentally as a team," said Clatchey, whose team lost 75-59 to Gibbons. "I thought it was a championship effort. I told them after the game there were no losers."

Mark Karcher hit a short jumper off of the glass with five seconds remaining in overtime, then Alphonso Jones quickly stole the ensuing inbounds pass to secure the win for the Panthers.

Karcher, a junior swing forward, scored the final seven points for St. Frances (18-4, 4-1) to finish with a game-high 25 points. Eric Payton added 13. Daniel Whye led Mount St. Joseph with 15 points.

The Gaels (10-6, 2-4) had tied the game at 63 with 17 seconds remaining in overtime on a three-pointer by Jeremy Walsh and St. Frances immediately called a timeout.

When play resumed, Payton inbounded the ball to Karcher, who started the down the sidelines with a defender on him, cut into the lane and hit the game-winner.

"I wasn't sure if they were going to play man or zone," said Karcher, who pulled down 10 rebounds. "As I held the ball and saw them go into man-to-man, I decided to take it all the way."

Jones opened the scoring in overtime with a jumper from the top of key. Mount St. Joseph tied the game at 58 on a layup by Aaron Bowles with 2:29 remaining.

The Panthers went up 61-58 with 56 seconds, as Karcher converted three of four free throws, before two free throws by Cory McNeill brought the Gaels to within 61-60 with 42 seconds left.

Two more free throws by Karcher gave St. Frances a 63-60 lead with 30 seconds left. A three-point attempt by McNeill missed, but the ball was knocked out of bounds by St. Frances with 23 seconds remaining.

After Mount St. Joseph called a timeout, Bowles inbounded the ball to Walsh who quickly pulled up and hit the game-tying three-pointer.

The Gaels led 53-45 with 5:19 left in regulation, but St. Frances scored five straight to close within 53-50. A layup by Corsey Edwards put Mount St. Joseph ahead by five with 3:03 remaining.

Mount St. Joseph was up 56-52 with 2:01 left when Whye missed the front end of an one-and-one and Jones hit a basket on the other end with 1:27 left.

A traveling violation against Mount St. Joseph with 54 seconds left resulted in Payton tying the game at 56 on a basket with 39 seconds left.

"I thought our kids played well under the pressure," said St. Frances coach William Wells, whose team has won five games in six days. "Mount St. Joseph came to play today."

* Cardinal Gibbons 60, Towson Catholic 56:Josh Davalli scored 18 points and James Urban added 17 to lift the Crusaders.

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