Knights advance (barely)

Tom Batters
Richwoods senior Mason Alwan hit a big three-pointer with 50 seconds left in overtime and the Knights beat Morton, 56-54, Tuesday night to advance t the Sectional final Friday.

Richwoods led by 13 points in the fourth quarter and appeared to be on its way to closing out the Sectional semifinal game against Morton Tuesday night, but Morton made a late rally and forced the game into overtime before the No. 1-ranked Knights escaped with the 56-54 victory to advance to the Sectional final.

The Knights made just four of 11 free throws in the fourth quarter, which allowed Morton to stay close.

Richwoods led 49-44 with 12 seconds left when Knights senior Tony Frazier was called for a technical foul. Tyler Lundeen made both free throws to make it a 49-46 game. Morton senior Adam Kumpf hit a three-pointer with three seconds left to send the game into overtime.

Morton got the lead in overtime when Will Headean drove to the basket and made a hook-shot layup off the glass with 2:51 left. After Richwoods senior Aaron Davis was called for an offensive foul, Headean made one of two free throws to extend Morton's lead to 52-49 with 1:25 left.

Richwoods senior Tylon Deal drove the length of the court and made a layup to make it 52-51. He was fouled on the play, but missed the free throw.

With 1:11 left, Lundeen made two free throws to give Morton a 54-51 lead.

With :50 left, Richwoods senior Mason Alwan broke free and made a three-point shot to tie the game, 54-54.

Richwoods regained possession after a scramble for the loose ball. With :33 left, Richwoods coach Mike Ellis called a timeout to set up one last shot.

Alwan and Deal passed the ball crisply along the perimeter and worked the clock down to :05 before passing it to Frazier who penetrated into a seam in the paint and made a layup with :03.2 left.

Morton coach Steve Schupp called a timeout. The Potters could not get a shot off in the final three seconds and time ran out.

See the March 17 edition of the Peoria Times-Observer for more coverage of this game and Friday's sectional title game.