The Aces pulled out a heart-pounding 60-58 overtime thriller against Easton on Wednesday night at Reading High School. With the game tied at 58, sophomore Greg Robbins hit a pull-up jumper just before the buzzer to seal the win and send Aces Nation into a frenzy. The Dawg Pound rushed the Geigle Complex court, capping a super Sweet Sixteen battle that until the final moments was anything but a party.
After leading most of the way and by as many as 11 points early in the 4th, the Aces watched their margin disappear as the Red Rovers hit three consecutive deep threes in the closing minutes of regulation, including the tying bucket with less than seven seconds on the clock. In overtime, the Aces struck first on a three by Greg Robbins and kept it going with clutch free throws by Eric Barefield and Carl Johnson.
The Red Rovers remained determined and knotted the game at 58 on two foul shots by point guard Angel Puchales. That's when Robbins went to work.
The sophomore, who led all scorers with 26 points on the night (including six three-pointers), took the inbounds with 9.6 seconds to play and dribbled the length of the court to the top of the paint. He rose above his defender and launched a jumper that hit nothing but net. Game over. Another wild night for the Maroon & White.
Johnson finished with 16 points and five assists and Ben Lucas nailed four treys for 12 points. Eric Stahler (3 points, 7 assists, 5 rebounds) and Eric Barefield (3 points) rounded out the scoring.
The Aces hit 11 three-pointers on the night. With the win, LM moves to 24-7 on the season and earns an Elite 8 match-up on Saturday with Simon Gratz (24-6), the Philadelphia Public League runner-up. (Gametime is 3 PM at Norristown HS). The Bulldogs knocked off Penn Manor 67-46 in 2nd round play. Easton, the District 11 champ, finishes the season at 29-2, the best finish by the Rovers in more than 20 years.
For coverage of the game by Jabari Young of Main Line Life and photos by Pete Bannan (including the Robbins game-winner), click here.
Click for additional coverage by the Philadelphia Inquirer and Easton's hometown newspapers, the Allentown Morning Call and Easton Express Times. For photographs by David Porter, visit tornadoalleyhoops.com.