With the lead going back and forth, Allen Community College’s men’s basketball team set itself up for a win in the final seconds over Pratt Tuesday night.
The Red Devils had the ball with 4.6 seconds left, underneath the hoop in the offensive end. Darius Redrick lobbed the ball into the free throw lane to Courtney Stockard, who followed through with one hand for the alley-oop lay-in. Pratt had one last chance with 3.4 seconds left, but didn’t get a clear look as the clock expired. Allen won, 59-57.
“Yeah, the underneath, out-of-bounds play is setup,” coach Andy Shaw said. “We haven’t practiced it before, but I have it on my play sheet for when there’s not much time left and we need to get a basket. It’s kind of a misdirection play by making them think we are throwing it to someone else, but we actually lob to another player. We executed without running it in practice, which is great to see.”
It was only fitting that Stockard hit the final basket. He led all scorers with 29 points — 49 percent of Allen’s scoring. Most of those points came from the charity line, where he made 13 of 16 on the night.
Trailing 52-51 with 4:30 left in the game, Josh Sweet hit a 3-pointer to give Allen the 54-52 lead. Pratt’s Evan Hines earned an old-fashioned three points. Hines drew a foul while he made a lay-up, followed by a successful free throw. Pratt led 55-54 with 3:50 left in the game.
After getting another two points, Pratt extended its lead to 57-54. But, Stockard played clutch by making a 3-pointer to tie the score with 2:15 left. That play set up Stockard’s last-second heroics.
Allen was slow to start the second half. Their first field goal after intermission came from a Sweet 3-pointer with 9:45 left. Before that basket, the Red Devils scored all of their second half points on 9-10 free throws.
THE RED DEVILS got to the hoop much easier in the first half, building a 33-27 lead.
Trailing 10-9 with 14:00 left in the first, Allen’s Sweet laid a ball off the backboard for Stockard to slam into the hoop for the 11-10 lead — Allen’s first of the game.
Later in the half, Stockard drove to the basket and hit a one-handed lay-up giving the Red Devils a 26-22 lead with 3:50 remaining. Stockard scored the next three Allen points from the free throw line to give the Red Devils a 29-26 lead. Sweet hit a 3-pointer and Stockard made another free throw to end the half with a six-point lead.
Stockard also led Allen with six rebounds. Sweet scored 17 points and dished out three assists. Stockard and Daniel Southworth also had three assists. Zach McNabb scored seven points. John Cornett, Darren Spruil and Southworth each had two points.
Allen trailed in both rebounds, 27 to the Beavers’ 31, and turnovers, with 13 to Pratt’s 10. But, the Red Devils were able to keep the game close and executed in the final play to win.
“We really did a great job executing down the stretch in the last couple of minutes,” Shaw said. “A couple of sets we had, we were able to score or get fouled off of. So, I was proud of them executing.”
Allen (1-4) next plays on the road at North Oklahoma College-Enid on Friday at 8 o’clock.
“It feels good to get a win for sure. Our first eight games — everybody that we have played and everybody that we are going to play — are against undefeated teams except for Pratt. We got to them tonight,” Shaw said.
“But, the two teams we are going to play over the weekend are undefeated and then Butler again, they’re still undefeated. We set up a really tough schedule to help our guys after the break going into conference. Hopefully that will help us, but it does feel really good to win against a quality team.”
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