That’s exactly what Davenport did Thursday in the second half, when the Wildcats outscored Delaware League rival SK, 31-19.
“We talked to the kids in the locker room at halftime and said we’re still in the game,” said Fisher, whose team faced an 18-15 deficit at the break. “We had to come out in the third quarter (strong) and we played a pretty good third quarter.”
Corey Hartman and Davi made consecutive three-pointers from the right wing to spark a back-and-forth third period that featured eight lead changes and two ties. Kyle Moorby snapped the last deadlock, turning a steal into an uncontested layup with 15 seconds left in the third period to give Davenport a 33-31 edge.
The Wildcats, who won sectional championships in 2006 and 2007, then took control with a 6-0 run on baskets by Hartman, Moorby and Davi. Ty Faulk’s and-one lay-in from the right block ended the spurt with 5:05 remaining, but he missed the free throw. Finne answered 10 seconds later with a layup on a non-stop, end-to-end drive to put Davenport up, 41-33.
Faulk bounced in a shot off the front of the rim and then capped the scoring for sixth-seeded SK (15-5) with a foul-line swish off a long rebound. The Rams failed to get any closer, though, as Moorby (1-for-2), Finne (2-for-3) and Davi (2-for-2) combined on a game-ending 5-0 run at the free throw line.
“I thought Davenport played really good defense,” said VanValkenburgh, who led the Rams to consecutive sectional championships in 2009 and 2010. “They changed it up just enough to keep us off-balance and they hit their foul shots at the end. We struggled offensively, but a lot of that was their defense.”
Faulk scored 10 of his 14 points after halftime, but SK didn’t get much elsewhere. Metzko’s 14-point night ended with six points in the third quarter, when Dan Nelson scored two and Ty Magnan hit a free throw. All six of the Rams’ fourth-quarter points came from Faulk.