CORTLAND – Tim Davis mentioned to Oxford’s players in his post-game locker room speech that around 178 schools in New York State play Class C basketball, and 170 were sitting home Saturday.
The Blackhawks, to their dismay, will take a seat along side those 170-plus schools after suffering their one and only loss in 2009 at SUNY Cortland.
Onondaga, Section III’s Class C champion, made just enough foul shots in the fourth quarter to advance to the state semifinals at Glen Falls this weekend winning 44-37.
The Tigers were just 6-for-16 from the foul line in the fourth quarter, but made 5-for-8 in the last minute to pull away. Oxford, for its part, made it tough on itself hitting just 5-for-24 from the field in the second half.
“Most of the time I thought we executed our offense, we just couldn’t make a shot,” said Oxford coach Tim Davis, whose club finished 21-4 overall, while seeing an 18-game winning streak draw to a close.
Onondaga, battle-tested playing in the Onondaga Conference in the Syracuse area, finished the regular season just two games over .500, but has since won six straight games. It is now two wins from a state championship.
“When you get to this level, everybody is good, and we knew Oxford would make runs at us,” said Onondaga head coach Larry Behm. “Chris Cota did a great job defensively for us. We stuck with a zone, but I told him to stay at the side of (Champlin), and he made it difficult for (Champlin).”