BINGHAMTON – Susquehanna Valley made an abundance of big shots, none bigger than the athletic move completed by forward Caitlyn Knapp.
Knapp delivered the back-breaking shot of all back-breakers with 33 seconds left in the Section IV Class B championship game lifting the Sabers to their first sectional basketball title Saturday night at the Floyd L. Maines Veteran Memorial Arena.
Knapp drove to the left across the lane and banked in a running left-handed shot – Knapp is right-handed – giving her club a 53-49 lead. SV made two more free throws in the final 20 seconds in a 55-49 Class B victory over Norwich.
"You have to think that is not a shot (Knapp) practices," said Norwich head coach Josh Bennett. "She made an off-balance shot, so what are you going to do?"
Knapp's clutch basket was pivotal to SV's success, and Norwich will likely point to one critical play midway through the fourth quarter that severely hampered its chances at victory.
Norwich trailed by as many as 11 points in the third quarter, and was down eight points one minute into the fourth quarter. The Tornado closed to 45-43 with 4:21 left after a Bridget Murphy put-back basket, and a free throw from Meghan Komendarek.
After Komendarek's made free throw, Norwich used a three-quarter trapping press that yielded a turnover. Komendarek stole the ball at midcourt, and drove for a layup. Komendarek was whistled for a charge disallowing the tying basket. More importantly, it was Komendarek's fifth foul sending her to the bench the final-half of the last quarter.