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PHS upsets rival South

Big Red Shaver has game high 20 points

Photo by Jay W. Bennett Parkersburg’s Kionte Peacock has his shot blocked by Parkersburg South’s Alex Woolard (20) while Patriot teammate Jake Dennis (5) also defends during Saturday night’s game inside Memorial Fieldhouse.

PARKERSBURG — Christmas came a couple days early for host Parkersburg here Saturday night inside Memorial Fieldhouse as the Big Reds upset rival Parkersburg South in overtime, 60-56.

“This is for our kids,” said Big Red boss Jeff Mennillo, who got a game-high 20 points from Dylan Shaver, which included a 3 with 2:48 left in regulation that proved to be the final points before heading into overtime even at 46. “I mean, I’ll tell you, we had a little team meeting yesterday. We really didn’t even practice. We had a long discussion about stuff and came in today and had a shootaround.

“We challenged some guys to step up and they stepped up. It was a great team effort. We didn’t panic. I think we were down eight or nine and they just plugged away one possession at a time and clawed back into it.”

Indeed that was the case as Jake Dennis scored two of his team-high 17 points on a turnaround jumper with 3:15 left in the third to give the Patriots (1-3) a 42-34 lead. Jake Johnson, though, knocked down a trifetca for part of his 11-point effort to make it a 42-37 entering the fourth.

Sam Potts converted a three-point play to open the fourth as the Big Reds were within two. However, Patriot Malaki Sylvia, who had 13 points and a game-high 11 rebounds, answered with a bucket only to have a Shaver wide open 3 close it to 44-43.

Shaver, who added eight rebounds, four assists and three steals, was left open again deep on the left wing and tied the game at 48-all. Both programs had a couple chances in the final 2-plus minutes, but Seth Fallon’s potential game-winning runner in the lane prior to the horn was no good.

Kionte Peacock finished with just eight points for the Big Reds, but he found Jacob McKnight open in the corner in front of the PHS student cheering section and the first team all-state soccer keeper drained the trifecta to give PHS (1-3) the lead for good.

Parkersburg South, which is off until Thursday when Spring Valley invades, opened the overtime with consecutive turnovers. With 2:31 left, McKnight was open again in the corner, but used a pump fake and then swished in a 16-foot baseline jumper. After Shaver had a lay-in to put PHS ahead 53-46, the Patriots missed a long 3 and McKnight grabbed the rebound and fired ahead to an awaiting Peacock, who stuffed it home as it appeared the game was over with PHS leading 55-46.

That didn’t prove to be the case as the final 90 seconds were furious and wild.

After Dennis tallied two buckets and a foul shot, a banked in 3 by Fallon, who had 13 points, drew the visitors within three at 57-54 with 18.1 ticks to go. Shaver was fouled and converted both charity stripe tosses to push it back to a five-point cushion. Despite getting a lay-in by Fallon to make it a one possession game at 59-56, the Patriots didn’t get any closer.

PHS was called for a 5-second violation, but the Patriots couldn’t convert when their inbounds pass was tipped and then called off one of their own players, which gave the Big Reds the ball back. McKnight made the first free throw to secure the triumph as he finished with 10 points.

“It was all self inflicted wounds,” said PSHS head coach Mike Fallon, whose club held a 21-13 rebounding edge at the break, but finished with just a 32-31 advantage. “I mean we took crazy shots. We took dumb shots. We couldn’t finish around the rim. Like I told our kids, if you don’t learn from this and there is not enough pride in you to bounce back from this and find a way, then you probably don’t need to be in the locker room. That one is rough to take.

“It’s going to happen. We were due to get upset by them. Give their kids credit. Shaver, I can’t believe we didn’t guard him. After every timeout we were saying do not leave him. We kind of put ourselves in a predicament when they come to our place because now we got to win. We have a lot of work to do, but we’ll get there.”

PSHS hit 8 of 27 from downtown and finished 21 of 58 (36.2 percent) for the game. PHS, which plays Dayton Thurgood Marshall on Thursday in the Braggin Rights Classic, finished 23 of 42 (54.8 percent) from the field.

“They took coaching well during the game and executed as we switched sets,” Mennillo added. “They made good decisions and trusted each other.

“That put some wind in our sails and kind of gets our heads right. Hopefully, there is room to grow now.”

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