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Greensburg Central boys cash in on chances to beat Greensburg Salem in 2OT

Bill Beckner Jr.
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Opportunities kept arriving at Greensburg Salem’s doorstep. At the end of regulation. At the end of the first overtime, and again at the end of the second.

But Greensburg Central Catholic did just enough with the chances it had to snag a 52-50 victory in a nip-and-tuck backyard rivalry game Saturday night at the Shootout at Seton Hill.

“It was one of those nights where you were just waiting for someone to make a play,” GCC coach Greg Bisignani said. “We were fortunate to make a couple foul shots and come away with the win. It was like a playoff game, and we had to execute the entire time.”

The score was tied 28-28 after three quarters, 40-40 after regulation and 46-46 heading to the second OT.

“The team that made one less mistake was going to win,” Greensburg Salem coach Mark Zahorchak said. “You look back on games like this and see a ton of plays that could have made the difference.”

Ben LaCarte made a steal in the lane for GCC (11-6), and Geoff Helm made 1 of 2 free throws with 11 seconds left in the second overtime to make it 52-49.

Helm, though, was whistled for a foul on Jack Oberdorf, who was attempting a 3-pointer. Oberdorf made 1 of 3 free throws with 3 seconds remaining for the Golden Lions (8-9). He missed the third on purpose, and the ball went out of bounds to the Golden Lions, who were playing their third game in five days.

The ball was inbounded, but Ryan Thomas’ jumper missed at the buzzer.

“We had chances to close it out,” Zahorchak said. “Sooner or later, that comes back to bite you. We were in a little bit of a funk offensively. Give (GCC) credit. They defended well, especially inside.”

Helm picked off a pass in the closing seconds of the first overtime and nearly won with a floater down the middle, but the ball hit the front of the rim.

Joel LoNigro had five of his game-high 21 points in the overtimes. Helm finished with 14, and Max Pisula chipped in

11.

LaCarte made a pair of free throws with 1:38 left in the second OT to make it 51-49.

“LaCarte gave us some good minutes off the bench,” Bisignani said. “We have to be able to execute better at the end of games.”

GCC led 36-31 with 4:15 left in regulation. But Parsons scored six straight points to cut it to 38-37.

Cavan Trout sent the game to overtime with a 3 that nearly rimmed out but dropped with 1:30 left.

Parsons scored 20 for the Golden Lions, and Thomas added 10.

A portion of the proceeds from Saturday’s five-game event go to St. Jude’s Hospital.

Bill Beckner is a Tribune-Review staff writer. You can contact Bill at [email protected] or via Twitter @BillBeckner.