Lockport Union-Sun & Journal Online

Sports

December 11, 2013

Sobieraski's heroics not enough for Lions

St. Joe's outlasts LHS in Mother of All Rotary OT finals

LOCKPORT —

The momentum swung like a pendulum in the Lions’ Den on Saturday night.
By the middle of the fourth quarter, all that was left on the court were two outstanding high school basketball teams on their last legs slugging it out the old fashioned way.
The crowd, packed in like sardines in some sections, were at the edges of the seats as Lockport and St. Joe’s went to overtime in a Lockport Rotary Club Tip-Off Tournament finals we won’t soon forget.
When the smoke cleared and the dust settled, the Marauders beat the host Lions, 78-73, in one of the best basketball games seen in this city in quite a few years.
As in Friday’s opener against Williamsville East, the Lions jumped out on the Marauders quickly, opening up a nine-point 38-29 lead at halfime, led by senior Charlie Sobieraski’s 14 points. St. Joe’s chipped away at the lead in the third quarter and eventually regained the advantage as the lead changed backand-forth as often as the possessions.
Late in the fourth quarter, St. Joe’s held a small lead, but the Lions crept to within one shot of tying the game in the closing seconds.
Cue Sobieraski (17 points, 7 rebounds), who drained a three-point bucket at the buzzer to tie the game in dramatic fashion at 67-67 as bodies spilled onto the floor, paving the way for overtime.
“It was the heat the moment. We practice them every day,” Sobieraski said. “Coach stresses step into your shot and it worked out for the best. (Senior Ryan) Guyton hustled down and got the rebound and kicked it out and I was wide open. It worked out for the best.”
The Lions got two free throws and a bucket by Lawrence to lead by 4 points early in OT, but the Marauders scored eight straight points and held on to win, led by tourney MVP Justin Hollins’ 29 points.

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