Make us your home page

Get the quickest, smartest news, analysis and photos from the Bucs game emailed to you shortly after the final whistle.

(View our Privacy Policy)

Boys basketball: Wesley Chapel D wakes up, forces overtime win

WESLEY CHAPEL — At one point during the third quarter Tuesday night, Wesley Chapel trailed district rival Hernando by 16 points. Fans had long since stopped cheering when the Wildcats had the ball.

Then the Wildcats proved they could power through a long match. Wesley Chapel held on to its runnerup spot in Class 5A, District 7, defeating the Leopards 69-66 in overtime.

The Wildcats were behind for the first three quarters but hit key shots in the third and started forcing turnovers in the fourth.

"I said defense was going to be the key," Wesley Chapel coach Doug Greseth said during halftime. "It's a long game; keep your heads up."

He told the boys that in addition to blocking and forcing turnovers, they needed to get inside shots if they were going to steal the win in the second half.

It wouldn't be easy as the Wildcats trailed by 10 points at halftime. They surged back, however, scoring 36 points in the second half while holding the Leopards to 26.

"I thought we started taking better shots, making better calls," Greseth said.

A 3-pointer by Carson Emery drew the Wildcats within one point of tying the score in the fourth, the closest they'd come to catching up since the first few minutes of the game. Wesley Chapel forced a turnover on the next play, and Sebastian Mejia's free throw tied it at 54 with a little more than four minutes remaining.

The rest of the fourth quarter was a rapid back and forth that had fans on both sides jumping to their feet. The buzzer sounded with the score tied at 60.

Marcus Hayne got the ball for Wesley Chapel on the tip-off, and the Wildcats took and held their first lead since the first quarter. The last four minutes of the game were slow, with both sides taking frequent free throws, and the Leopards never had a chance to catch up.

Hayne led both teams in scoring with 28 points — 10 of which were free throws. Emery added 14 points for the Wildcats.

In purple and gold, Mark Wilson led the Leopards with 21 points. Mike Jones had 11, and Jonathan Zayas had 10.

East Bay knocks off another unbeaten

GIBSONTON — As East Bay prepared to pull its starters in the closing minutes of Tuesday's 70-53 smothering of Strawberry Crest, a familiar chant started in the bleachers: "Over-rated."

The Indians (8-1) were undeterred by the Chargers' No. 7 state ranking in Class 7A and dominated from the start to rip off their seventh consecutive victory.

East Bay also avenged its only loss of the season — a 29-point defeat to Strawberry Crest last month, back when the Indians' football playoff run left its basketball team undermanned and overmatched.

That showed Tuesday night. A week after East Bay gave Lennard its first loss of the season, the Indians repeated the feat against Strawberry Crest (9-1) with a dominant defense. The Chargers shot 3-of-15 from the field in the fist quarter and mustered only 16 points in the first half.

East Bay had no trouble getting its offense going. Anton Crutcher — a defensive back/receiver who missed the previous meeting because of football — single-handedly matched Strawberry Crest by scoring seven of his game-high 22 points in the first quarter. After James Davis hit a 3 in the closing minute of the first quarter, the Indians led by double digits the rest of the way to help East Bay tie the Chargers atop the Class 7A, District 7 standings.

Matt Baker, Times staff writer

Boys basketball: Wesley Chapel D wakes up, forces overtime win 12/17/13 [Last modified: Tuesday, December 17, 2013 10:42pm]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times


Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

  1. Rays journal: Jake Faria heads to DL with left abdominal strain

    The Heater

    ST. PETERSBURG — RHP Jacob Faria made the trek he didn't want to take after his last start. It was to the trainer's room. The pain in his left abdominal went from nagging to an issue during his start that night in Toronto.

    A BIG DAY: Adeiny Hechavarria gets a hug from Steven Souza Jr. after hitting a two-run home run in the seventh. Hechavarria also triples and ends the game with a  stellar play at shortstop.
  2. Rays up next: vs. Blue Jays, 7:10 p.m. Tuesday, Tropicana Field

    The Heater

    Tonight: Off

    Up next: vs. Blue Jays, 7:10 p.m. Tuesday, Tropicana Field.

  3. Tom Jones' Two Cents: Bucs, Jaguars both get blame for terrible preseason ratings

    TV and Radio

    Tampa Bay Times columnist Tom Jones looks back at the best and worst of a weekend in televised sports.

    Worst matchup

    Tampa Bay Buccaneers wide receiver Mike Evans (13) tries to get past Jacksonville Jaguars cornerback Brian Dixon (41) and safety Barry Church (42) during the first half of an NFL preseason football game, Thursday, Aug. 17, 2017, in Jacksonville, Fla. (AP Photo/Phelan M. Ebenhack) JVS119
  4. Roger Mooney's takeaways from Sunday's Rays-Mariners game

    The Heater

    This is the Blake Snell everyone has been waiting for. Working off his fastball. Challenging hitters. Staying focused regardless of how many runners are on base. Snell has pitched at least six innings for three straight starts. He had a rough start to the year, but it looks like he has figured it out.

  5. Blake Snell shines as Rays beat Mariners to end skid (w/video)

    The Heater

    ST. PETERSBURG — Blake Snell delivered the best outing of his young career and the Rays offense continued its home run-hitting ways for a 3-0 victory Sunday against the Mariners in front of 13,354 at Tropicana Field.

    Tampa Bay Rays third baseman Evan Longoria (3) with starting pitcher Blake Snell (4) after the top of the seventh inning of the game between the Seattle Mariners and the Tampa Bay Rays at Tropicana Field in St. Petersburg, Fla. on Sunday, Aug. 20, 2017.