Norwich unable to hold lead

Boys’ Basketball

Sus Valley 42, Norwich 41

CONKLIN – Norwich failed to hold a fourth-quarter lead for the second time this past week, and suffered another hard-luck defeat Friday at Susquehanna Valley.

Norwich (8-5) has two losses this season by one point and two more in overtime, one of those to Chenango Valley this past Tuesday. “This was a tough one,” said Norwich coach Mark Abbott. “It was a game of great effort on both sides, and some ugly, ugly basketball. The defenses were stingy, but at the same time, the offenses were really bad.”

Coming off a lackluster first half in which Norwich trailed SV 16-13, Robert Martin spearheaded the Tornado’s one solid quarter of basketball dumping in 10 points in a 20-point outburst that gave NHS a 33-25 edge with eight minutes to play.

SV rallied using a strong inside game to close the gap, and after a Nate Foote jumper put Norwich up 41-39 with 1:01 to play, it was the SV defense that swung the tide.

Norwich regained possession after a defensive stop, but turned the ball over leading to a Ryan Mitchell layup that allowed the hosts to tie the game at 41-41 with 34.7 seconds left.

Norwich set up for the last shot, but a backcourt violation with 18 seconds remaining gave SV the ball back again. With 4.3 seconds remaining, David Hessell was fouled and hit one of two foul shots for the lead, the second attempt, a miss, was knocked around in a loose-ball scramble as time expired. “Our last game was an offensive war and this was a defensive war,” Abbott said. “I’m not a fan of mental mistakes, and we made too many of them down the stretch when we had chances to do damage with the clock and give ourselves breathing room.”

Martin led Norwich with 17 points and Wade Kornegay came off the bench to net a season-high eight.

Norwich: Shane Thompson, 0 2-2-2; Patrick Coates, 0; Keegan Edwards, 1 3-4-5; Nate Foote, 2 0-0-4; Robert Martin, 6 3-6-17; Vaughn Labor, 0; Tyler Saroka, 0; Justin Ballin, 0; Wade Kornegay, 3 1-2-8; Amos Parry, 2 1-2-5; Craig Berg, 0 0-0-0. Totals: 14 10-16-41.

Sus Valley: Eric Novobilski, 0; Nick Pace, 2 0-0-5; Pat Reardon, 1 0-0-2; David Hessell, 2 1-2-5; Ryan Mitchell, 3 2-2-10; Terrell Irvine, 4 4-7-12; Ryan McKercher, 1 0-0-2; Eric Freije, 2 2-4-6; Mike Chantry, 0. Totals: 15 9-17-42.

Score by quarters

NHS 5 8 20 8–41

SVa. 4 12 9 17–42

Fouled out: none. Three-point goals: (SV) Mitchell 2, Pace. JV: Norwich won 57-38, Officials: Barker, Westfall.

Sherburne-Earlville 57, Sauquoit Valley 35

SAUQUOIT – Sherburne-Earlville won its 15th straight game and moved one win from clinching a division title in Friday’s win at Sauquoit Valley.

Leading the Indians by only three points at halftime, S-E pulled away holding the host team to just 13 second-half points. Jon Pinney and Wilson Rose scored six points in the third, and Tom Niles added four to expand the halftime margin to 14. “Our defensive intensity in the second half was as good as it’s been all year,” said S-E coach Kevin Vibbard. “We made them go faster than they wanted, and on our offensive end we executed well.”

Rose scored a game-high 22 points and Pinney added 13. S-E can clinch the division title with a win over Cooperstown Thursday.

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