“They played with more heart than I could have imagined,” SC coach Justin Frisbie said of his 10-8 squad, a misleading as record as the Chiefs play in the Interscholastic Athletic Conference and regularly play class B and C schools. “They’ve been so committed to finishing this thing out. They never stopped believing.”
It went back-and-forth all night with neither squad leading by more than eight points.
SC led, 10-2, early and again took an eight-point lead when 6-foot-6 center Justin Schneider, who scored a game-high 19 points, scored on short left-handed shot 15 seconds into the fourth quarter.
But Edmeston held the Chiefs scoreless for the next six minutes, continuously forcing steals or missed shots.
It’s not as if Edmeston went wild during SC’s scoring drought, but senior guard Logan Vibbard did score five points during that span as the Panthers pulled to 45-42. Vibbard, a tireless guard who scored 18 points, hit a free throw with 6:49 left, scored on a putback with four minutes remaining and hit a transition layup with 3:20 to go to make it a three-point game.
Reserve guard Jack Stebbins doubled SC’s lead by hitting a three-pointer with 1:45 left in regulation.
That set up a wild conclusion to regulation. Edmeston hit its only three-pointers six seconds apart to tie the score. First, Linton Wainright received an inbound pass from the baseline and swished a three-pointer from right the circle. Then Vibbard stole the ensuing inbound pass and made a three-pointer from the top of the key to tie it at 48 with one minute left.
When Miller was called for traveling with 42.9 seconds left, Edmeston had possession. Vibbard drove to the basket with 20 seconds left, but couldn’t get a runner to go on the right side of the lane. Vibbard grabbed the miss and Edmeston called timeout with 15.6 seconds remaining. After Logan Clark nearly stole the ball from Vibbard, Edmeston called another timeout with 6.6 left.