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St. Patrick narrowly escaped Thornton on Sunday afternoon, pulling out a 79-73 triple-overtime thriller at the Ridgewood Shootout.
Tied at 69 after two overtimes, the Shamrocks (5-2) started the third extra frame on a 5-0 run and didn’t allow a Thornton point until there was 30 seconds left in the period. St. Patrick forced three missed shots and a turnover on Thornton’s first four possessions.
“I’ve never been a part of a crazy game like this,’’ St. Patrick’s Elijah Watson said. “We just had to keep going hard and not give up.’’
The Shamrocks were happy to have Watson and fellow senior Royale Ewing back after the duo missed play last week because of disciplinary issues. The two combined for 51 points Sunday, with Ewing scoring a game-high 27 points and Watson adding 24.
Without Ewing, St. Patrick probably would not have forced double overtime. Ewing stepped to the line with eight-tenths of a second remaining and his team down two and made both free throws. He was able to get to the line because Thornton turned the ball over with 6.1 seconds remaining when a Wildcat stepped out of bounds with the ball.
Despite Justin Taylor picking up three quick fouls in the first quarter, Thornton (2-4) led 30-24 at the half.
The Shamrocks cut the deficit to 38-36 after three quarters. Thornton connected on only 3-of-10 shots in the period.
St. Patrick, which spent most of the first three quarters driving to the basket, had to change its game plan in the fourth quarter as fouls on its players started to mount. Ewing and two other Shamrocks picked up their fourth fouls in the fourth period.
“We had to be more conservative and not drive as hard as we would normally,’’ Watson said. “We couldn’t afford to have any of those guys out so we changed it up a little bit.’’
Demarcus Turner led Thornton with 17 points. Taylor recovered from early foul trouble and finished with 14 points.