Will Maguire scored 15 points, including four 3-pointers, and James Madison signee Nick Harris added 10 points in the Golden Lions’ 58-55 victory against Sprayberry, which was led by Armel Potter (25 points).
With 14 seconds left, Maguire made a foul shot for St. Pius’ last point and a five-point lead. Then there was some late-game suspense. After Maurion Skrine scored a basket, the Yellow Jackets would miraculously steal the ensuing inbounds pass and call timeout with 2.3 seconds left.
Now, needing a 3-pointer, coach Marc Carver was hoping to get the ball in Potter’s hands for a game-tying shot, but Miguel Alfonso deflected the inbounds pass and Sprayberry never got off a shot as time expired.
“At the end of the game, I felt like our guys clamped down on defense,” St. Pius coach Aaron Parr said. “They got really focused and our whole goal was staying with No. 2. [Potter] is a heck of a player for them.
“We just had one guy all over him and two guys ready to help and we just said we don’t want him to get the ball,” Parr said. “Our guys did a good job. They tried to force it to him and we were fortunate to get a steal. I was really proud of how our guys played down the stretch and hit free throws to seal it.”
Earlier in the frame, St. Pius reclaimed the lead for good when Ben Tuttle made a steal and layup for a 52-50 advantage with 2 minutes remaining.
Another highlight for the Golden Lions came just before halftime when Will Horton drained a runner from long distance to beat the buzzer.