North Crowley boys need buzzer-beater to clip Paschal

Posted Tuesday, Jan. 14, 2014  comments  Print Reprints

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It’s not how you start, it’s how you finish.

North Crowley’s Caleb Banks made sure his team protected their home court when he drilled a game-winning 3-pointer as time expired to lift North Crowley (11-8, 3-3 3-5A) to a 54-53 comeback victory over Fort Worth Paschal on Tuesday.

With 1.8 seconds left in the game, North Crowley’s coach Tommy Brakel made sure the ball was in the hands of his senior guard.

“[Coach Brakel] drew the play up for me and I was just hoping to get open to get a shot off,” said Banks, who finished with nine points. “I was ready for it.”

Paschal (13-7, 3-3) controlled the game on both ends of the court, building a 13-point third-quarter lead.

North Crowley chipped away at the deficit with the help of timely stops late in the fourth quarter.

“I told our guys this was a defining moment of our season — a must win,” Brakel said. “We have never been 2-3 in district play and you have to defend your home court; it was do or die and they had to show what they were made of.”

Paschal led 46-41 heading into the fourth quarter, but North Crowley’s swarming defense in the crucial moments prevented Paschal from executing on fast-break opportunities and low-post plays late in the game.

Paschal had its chance to seal the victory late, but going 1 of 4 from the free-throw line in the final 20 seconds prevented them stealing a road district game. Senior guard Xavier Mayes was one of three players to score in double figures for Paschal, leading the way with 14 points.

Jordon Myers was a big part of the comeback win for North Crowley, finishing with 14 points and pulling down 12 rebounds. Daniel McDowell added 12 points off the bench for the Panthers.

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