Reynolds’ star brings Greyhounds down again
Reynolds (55) Vs. Wilmington (53)
Feb 03, 2009

GREENVILLE — Down seven points late in the game, Wilmington High suddenly showed its heart.

And 90 seconds later, Chris Laverty broke it.


Laverty capped a 32-point effort with a buzzer-beating 3-pointer to lift Reynolds over the Greyhounds, 55-53, in a District 10, Region 2-AA game last night.

When the two teams clashed last month at Wilmington, Laverty had 33 points, including two free throws with three seconds left to give the Raiders a 52-50 decision.

“Chris is phenomenal,” Reynolds head coach Scott Weaver said of his senior guard. “I can’t say he’s always on his game like that, but you’ve seen two very good games from him (against Wilmington).”

Down by a point, Reynolds (7-0 region, 18-1 overall) in-bounded the ball in front of its bench with 18 seconds left. As the Raiders scrambled to find Laverty, Weaver was debating whether to call a time out.

“I thought about it — 10 seconds left, things are out of control,” he said. “But we knew that if we could get him the ball, you’ve just got to let him go and let him play.

“We did what we needed to, we got him the ball. He came down and he wants the ball in his hands at the end of game.”

In the first meeting, the Greyhounds (5-2, 12-6) squandered a four-point lead with two minutes to go. Last night, they rallied from a seven-point, fourth-quarter deficit on the strength of a 13-2 run, fueled by Dallas Hartman (who had six of his seven points) and Ian Kelly (four of his 15).

However, after Reynolds’ Jake Galus drained his third trey of the night to get Reynolds within one point, Hartman and Kelly each missed from underneath, setting up one last Reynolds possession and Laverty’s game-winning shot.

“I think Shane (Wagner) did a pretty good job of defending him,” Wilmington head coach Will Harris said of Laverty. “I don’t know how much harder we could have defended that shot, but he’s a playmaker. That was a heck of a shot.”

Throughout the night, the ’Hounds were unable to capitalize on opportunities at the foul line — they were just 11 of 21 from the stripe — nor could they take full advantage of the absence of Reynolds’ 6-9 senior center Russ Conley, who missed the game with a knee injury.

The 6-foot-5 Hartman, Wilmington’s top muscle inside, picked up his second foul with 3:02 left in the first quarter and sat out the rest of the half. He returned in the third period, but didn’t score until the fourth.

The 6-6 Matt Wagner filled in admirably on the boards with a team-high 10 rebounds, but netted only four points. Kelly, a 6-3 forward, finished strong but contributed just five of his points before intermission.

“We started off the way we wanted (building a 10-4 lead), then Dallas picked up his second and we had to get him out of there,” Harris said. “He’s such a big threat inside, and then a couple of my other big guys didn’t finish the way I’d like them to.

“We got the shots, we did a pretty good job on the offensive glass, but we’re fading away and not finishing layups. You can’t win games like that.”

Though the decision all but hands the league title to Reynolds, Wilmington is still very much alive for an at-large District 10 playoff bid. Automatic berths will go to three regional Class AA champions, leaving five spots open.

As of last night, only one team not leading its section had fewer losses than Wilmington.

“I think our region will be guaranteed two spots,” Harris observed. “But I don’t think we can lose another game if we want that second spot.”
Nightly Roundup
Game Scoreboard
Reynolds 12 17 13 13 0 55
Wilmington 13 12 10 18 0 53
Box Scores
Shane Wagner 4 1-2 11
Dallas Hartman 3 1-3 7
Carson Sharbaugh 1 4-4 6
Jake DeMedal 3 2-2 8
Ian Kelly 7 1-3 15
Matt Wagner 1 2-6 4
Jibreal Roberts 1 0-1 2
Anthony Derrick 0 0-0 0.
Totals: 20 11-21 53 .

Chris Laverty 14 2-2 32
Andrew Martin 4 1-2 9
Jake Galus 4 0-0 11
Ben Cutshaw 1 0-2 3
Brandon Weaver 0 0-2 0
Mark Parker 0 0-0 0
Thomas Mahlon 0 0-0 0.
Totals: 23 3-8 55.

WILMINGTON 13 12 10 18 — 53
REYNOLDS 12 17 13 13 — 55

3-point goals — Wilmington 2 (S. Wagner 2), Reynolds 6 (Galus 3, Laverty 2, Cutshaw 1).
JV score: Wilmington 52, Reynolds 31. High scorer: Wilmington — Brandon Burk 19.
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