Wilmington edges Sharpsville in thriller
Wilmington (56) Vs. Sharpsville (54)
By Andrew Petyak
New Castle News

The fourth quarter often has been disastrous for the Wilmington High boys basketball team this season.

The District 10, Region 2-AA Greyhounds have lost five games this season in which they’ve led or were tied in the fourth quarter.

Wilmington reversed the trend in dramatic fashion last night, winning a 56-54 section thriller against visiting Sharpsville.

“We talked about our fourth-quarter struggles as a team and understood we needed to take better shot selections late,” Greyhounds coach Mike Jeckavitch said. “We really buckled down in the defensive end. Anyone can step up on this team on any night. We saw what a team concept can really do.”

It was the second meeting between the two teams this season with Sharpsville claiming the first, 53-47.

Wilmington (2-5 region, 5-10 overall) trailed by four, 54-51, with 20 seconds to go.

“Rocco Fagan hit a three to tie it up,” Jeckavitch said. “Sharpsville tried to hold the ball for a last-second shot.”

The Blue Devils’ shot missed, opening the door for a Jordan Smith rebound. He found Travis Brumbaugh streaking up the court for an easy layup with seconds remaining to seal the win for the Greyhounds.

“That was a clutch defensive stop and nice awareness by Jordan,” Jeckavitch said. “Travis made a nice pump fake and scored with his right hand on the layup.”

Smith finished with 13 points to lead Wilmington. Brumbaugh scored eight points, six of which came in the fourth quarter.

“Travis is a kid who’s really put the time in. He’s always trying to get better and get that edge,” Jeckavitch said. “He really stepped up and made the buckets with a minute left. It takes some guts to take some of the shots he does. One thing I can’t question with him is his guts.”

The ’Hounds finished with three players scoring in double digits. Along with Smith, Jesse Hilliard and Dimitri Martini each had 10. Nate Anthony collected 12 boards, while Hilliard was next with nine.

The Blue Devils (4-4, 9-7) struggled in limited opportunities from the foul line, shooting 4 of 8 overall.

“One of the things we always set out to do is try to win the foul game, and we lost that big time,” said Sharpsville coach Jim Smiley, the former Neshannock coach who accumulated 380 victories over 27 years with the Lancers. “When you’re in a close ball game, those things make a difference.”

“It was a hard-fought game,” he said. “We missed some free throws and Wilmington made some plays. I give their kids a lot of credit.”

The Blue Devils’ Tyler Luchey recorded a game-high 15 points. Jake Bulick followed with 14.
Game Scoreboard
Wilmington 14 13 13 16 0 56
Sharpsville 12 10 19 13 0 54
Box Scores
Tyler Luchey 6 3-6 15,
Kyle Kennedy 6 1-2 13
Jake Bulick 7 0-0 14
Jalen Mockabee 3 0-0 7
Taylor Lenzi 2 0-0 5.
Totals: 25 4-8 54.

Rocco Fagan 3 3-4 10
Jesse Hilliard 3 4-5 10
Jordan Smith 5 2-3 13
Ryan Brumbaugh 0 1-2 1
Hunter Taylor 2 0-0 4
Dimitri Martini 4 1-3 10
Travis Brumbaugh 4 0-0 8.
Totals: 21 11-17 56.

SHARPSVILLE 12 10 19 13 — 54
WILMINGTON 14 13 13 16 — 56
3-point goals — Sharpsville 2 (Lenzi 1, Mockabee 1); Wilmington 3 (J. Smith 1, Fagan 1, Martini 1).
JV score: Wilmington 57, Sharpsville 34. High scorer: W — Travis Brumbaugh 13.

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