It wasn’t quite the shot Rummel coach Troy Holley was looking for.
But on this night, it gave Rummel just enough separation to squeak past Brother Martin and end eight years of frustration against its nemesis.
Danove’s three-point play with 38 seconds left in overtime helped the Raiders stay perfect in Catholic League play with a 67-64 victory over the host Crusaders.
“I felt like it was a big play because it quieted their crowd and gave us some momentum,” Danove said. “We needed that play.”
They needed it, but Holley didn’t quite want it.
“Andre isn’t one of our more explosive players, but he is an athletic, solid kid,” Holley said. “He comes to practice and make those plays every day. I was yelling ‘no’ and wanted him to pull the ball out, but he saw the opening and converted. It definitely put us over the edge.”
Trent Tully sank four free throws in the final 11.3 seconds left that helped Rummel pad its lead and snap a 16-game losing streak against Brother Martin.
Even more importantly, Rummel (11-9) improved to 2-0 in Catholic League play.
“In the Catholic League, anytime you win on the road it’s a big deal,” Holley said.
JaMarr Chase led the Raiders with 15 points and Iman Fazande and Shahid Reese had 13 each. It was enough to offset a career night by Brother Martin’s Tre Swilling, who finished with 31 points.
The Crusaders fell to 9-10 overall and 1-2 in Distirct 9-5A and lost their second league game in Conlin Gymnasium.
“My boys played their guts out,” Brother Martin coach Chris Biehl said. “We just need to play smarter. The heart is there, we just need to play with the brains. We are doing a lousy job of executing at times.”
Late in the third quarter and early in the fourth quarter, it didn’t seem like this one would need overtime
Rummel was in control after building a 44-33 lead in the opening minute of the final quarter. But the Crusaders stormed back.
Tre Swilling, who started the game on fire in the first quarter with 13 points, began to heat back up in the fourth. He scored nine points in the fourth.
A short jumper by Tyler Epps with 1:32 left tied it 52-52. It was knotted at 53 and Rummel had a chance to win it in regulation but turned it over with 3.7 seconds. A desperation trey by Epps at the buzzer sent it to overtime where Rummel prevailed.
“All the credit goes to Rummel,” Biehl said. “They were the better team tonight. They played their tails off and won a good game.”
The first quarter belonged to Swilling.
He converted a 3-point play and knocked down a pair of 3-pointers to score 13 points in the opening quarter to give Brother Martin a 21-16 lead.
But Rummel started the second quarter on a 12-0 run. Tully started the run with a 3-pointer and the Raiders also got five points (a 3-pointer and a shot in the paint) from Reese.
Brother Martin didn’t score its first points in the quarter until Epps scored on a steal and lay-up with 2:24 remaining in the half.
It was Brother Martin’s only field goal of the half. The only other two points came from the free throw line, where the Crusaders also struggled. Brother Martin went 2 for 9 from the line in the second quarter and Rummel lead 28-25 at the break. The Crusaders’ next field goal didn’t come until Swilling made a lay-up with 5:30 left in the third.
Rummel’s lead ballooned to 10 points (38-28) late in the third before Brother Martin rallied.
Epps finished with 12 points and Bruce-Jordan Swilling had 10 for the Crusaders.
Rummel plays St. Augustine on Friday, while Brother Martin gets the week off before playing St. Augustine on Tuesday.
“This is big, but it’s the Catholic League so we turn around Friday night and play St. Aug,” Holley said “There aren’t any easy ones. It’s a relief not to lose this one after having the lead. It’s good to see the kids persevere, especially being as young as we are.”