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Chautauqua Lake hangs on to top Buffalo East

February 25, 2016
By Matt Spielman (editorial@westfieldrepublican.com) , Westfield Republican

MAYVILLE (Feb. 19)- If ever a No. 4 seed with a 13-7 record beating a No. 5 seed with a 9-11 record could be considered an upset, it was Friday night's Section 6 Class C-1 quarterfinal in Mayville.

Chautauqua Lake, led by 24 points from senior Carter Davidson, took the lead midway through the fourth quarter and hung on late for a 48-47 win over East, the three-time defending Section 6 Class B-2 champions.

"Carter is a phenom. When he gets that open look, he is lights out," Chautauqua Lake coach Mike Putney said. "He is just so much fun. I don't want this to end because we have a great relationship. We enjoy this and he is a great kid."

Article Photos

Photo by Scott Reagle
Chautauqua Lake’s Aaron Swan drives past Buffalo East’s Justin Allen (5) during a Section 6 Class C-1 boys high school basketball quarterfinal game.

Chautauqua Lake took the lead for good midway through the fourth quarter. After East took its final lead of the game on a pair of Waunya Shaw free throws, Tyler Meredith made his only basket to give the hosts a 44-43 lead. Davidson made a pair of free throws inside of four minutes, but the Panthers turned the ball over and missed a layup on their next two possessions as the Thunderbirds' lead grew to five on two free throws from Devin Pope with 2:06 left.

"We have some great shooters and we were a little off (Friday)," Putney said. "Thank God we have Carter Davidson. If we hit more of our shots we are probably up 10 or 12 points."

Justin Allen hit a pair of free throws to pull East within three at 48-45 with 1:53 left before both teams missed 3-pointers. Chautauqua Lake then missed the front end of a 1-and-1 with 42 seconds left and the Panthers took over for a final possession with 38 seconds left.

After a missed 3-pointer in the final 10 seconds, senior Ashaunte Maryon grabbed the rebound and scored on a lay-in with one second remaining instead of kicking the ball out for a potential game-tying 3-pointer.

"I don't think I've ever cheered so much for the opposition to score," Putney quipped after the final buzzer.

The Thunderbirds safely inbounded the ball and began celebrating their spot in the semifinals.

"We've been in a lot of these situations. We've won some and we've lost some," Putney said about his underclassmen-laden team. "They are used to these type situations. They are still very young and they are learning. We'll still work on things (this) morning."

It looked like it might not be Chautauqua Lake's night early in the game.

The Thunderbirds took advantage of several East turnovers early in the first quarter and jumped out to an 8-0 lead, but the hosts were plagued by empty possessions of their own as the first eight minutes ran out and the Panthers trailed by just three as the buzzer sounded.

"I look into my point guard's eyes and he tells me things are going to be alright," Putney said when asked about the high number of first-quarter turnovers. "I trust him. Aaron Swan is a great kid. He wanted this one really bad, as everybody did. I have confidence in them and they delivered."

East then scored the first seven points of the second quarter by pounding the offensive glass and later went on a 7-2 run that included a Anthony Stevens 3-pointer to take a 23-20 with 2:08 remaining. Chautauqua Lake's Swan and the Panthers' Willard Anderson traded 3-pointers before the quarter was over, and East eventually took a 28-25 lead into halftime.

"They are a great team. I don't remember the stats on them sectional-wise, but they are always in it," Putney said. "They are a perennial team and they have a great coach, but my guys wanted it a little bit more than they did."

East then slowed the pace in the third quarter, running the shot clock under 10 seconds multiple times only to come away with five points through most of the frame. The Thunderbirds were unable to capitalize, turning the ball over five times in the quarter before Swan and Davidson closed the quarter with five straight points to help their team hang around.

"We switched some things up at halftime. We weren't getting good box outs. They were getting a lot of second, third, fourth chances uncontested," Putney said. "We really stressed making sure we pinned down. Aaron Swan lept out of the gym. He just racked up the boards."

Davidson finished with nine rebounds to go along with his 24 points while Pope had 13 points, nine rebounds, five assists and three steals. Swan chipped in eight points, 11 rebounds and seven assists for Chautauqua Lake (14-7).

Allen led East (9-12) with 15 points while Anderson added 11.

 
 
 

 

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