Huskies rally past No. 2 Ravenswood
A messy atmosphere was not limited to the outdoors Tuesday night. It could also be found inside the gymnasium of Herbert Hoover High School.
But cleanup detail did manage to make its way to Falling Rock for the Hoover boys basketball team, and just in time.
The host Huskies upended Class AA No. 2 Ravenswood 54-51, after trailing by as many as 14 points in the fourth quarter.
"It wasn't a pretty game for us," said Hoover coach Jeff Gandee. "We didn't play well throughout the first three quarters. In the fourth quarter we did step up and our defense got more intense.
"Anytime you play Ravenswood, you've got to play well. They aren't going to beat themselves typically, so we knew we had to come out and play. We challenged our kids and they made some key plays late."
Charlton Gandee, Jeff Gandee's son, led the Huskies (3-2) with 19 points, while Cody Morris added 13.
"They've been our two top offensive players so far this year," said Jeff Gandee. "It took Cody a while to get going tonight, but once he got going they just couldn't stop him."
However, the elder Gandee was far from pleased with his team's performance from the free-throw line, where the Huskies connected on just 19-of-31 attempts.
"We had a chance to put them away, but we let them hang around," the Hoover coach said. "Anytime you do that with someone like Ravenswood, anything can happen. Very fortunate to come out with the win, but I'm not happy with our performance at the charity stripe."
Sam Schoolcraft added nine points for Hoover, all coming at key moments. Schoolcraft hit his second 3-pointer as time expired in the second quarter to cut the Ravenswood lead to 25-22, while his last came with 3:57 left in the game to give the Huskies their first lead of the night.
Ravenswood (2-2) fell for the second consecutive game in heartbreaking fashion. The Red Devils dropped a 64-61 decision at home last Friday to Parkersburg Catholic.
"I'm just disappointed," said Ravenswood coach Mick Price. "In key moments, we didn't step up and make the plays we needed to make that we needed to. And for this team to be a good team, they need to learn to do that.
"[Charlton] Gandee just took over in the fourth quarter. They made key buckets and we didn't deserve to win."
Zack Martin led the way with 23 points for the Red Devils, while Ben Pannell added 13.
"I thought they tried," said Price. "Pannell's been a bit under the weather but he and Martin have to raise everybody's level. If they don't do that, it doesn't matter if those two combine for 40 points a game. We, as a whole team, need to get better."
Jeff Gandee remained optimistic about his team's future, considering the Huskies have played all five of their games at home so far this season.
"Anytime you step on the floor, you've got to play with confidence," said Gandee. "We're building it here at home, because we're going to hit the road at some point. Playing at home or away, you've got to play with confidence, and hopefully it will turn for us."
Reach Dave Miller at 304-348-1749 or firstname.lastname@example.org.