Glenelg’s Matt Hammert sank a driving layup with 16 seconds left, completing a comeback from down 17 points in the second half and providing the deciding basket in a 43-42 victory over Atholton on the road Monday.
Atholton (1-1, 2-1), which suffered its first loss of the season, had two attempts in the final seconds to win the game but both shots were off the mark. Glenelg (2-0, 2-1), meanwhile, got to celebrate its second straight victory in county play.
“For them to be able to overcome that kind of adversity says a lot about their character and their toughness,” said Glenelg coach Jansen McMillan about his team that trailed 32-15 in the opening minutes of the third quarter. “We played horrible in the first half, but we showed what we are capable of down the stretch.”
Glenelg ended up being led by 11 points apiece from Bryce Helensky and Hammert, while Atholton got nine points apiece from Ethan Shapiro and Luke Casey.
After an opening quarter where neither team led by more than four points, Atholton got itself some breathing room at the beginning of the second.
A 13-0 run stretching between the two quarters established a 23-12 Raider lead with 4:31 left before halftime. Then, in the final minutes before break, Atholton extended its advantage to 30-15.
Brady Acker made two free throws immediately out of halftime and the Raiders suddenly had their largest lead of the night, 32-15. But, turning to its bench for a lift, Glenelg got a spark
Helensky, who barely played in the first half, came out firing in the second and scored eight of his 11 points in the third quarter. “We were looking for somebody to step up and when we called his number he was ready,” McMillan said.
Glenelg ended up hitting five 3-point shots in the third quarter and got itself within six, 40-34, heading into the final eight minutes.
Another three by Helensky to open the fourth quarter made it a one-possession game. “Without a traditional post presence it’s key for us to be able to space the floor and make shots,” McMillan said. “We have a lot of kids that can shoot the three and all our guards have the green light.”
Atholton’s Justin Ballmer (8 points) made a lay-up with 1:24 remaining to temporarily push the Raider lead up to five, 42-37. But that would end up being the Raiders only points of the quarter.
Daine Van de Wall made back-to-back baskets to pull Glenelg within one in the final minute and then Hammert stepped in and played the role of hero.
Glenelg 43, Atholton 42
G (2-0, 2-1): Helensky 11, Hammert 11, Randle 8, Oates 5, Van de Wall 4, Mirano 2, Abu 2.
A (1-1, 2-1): Shapiro 9, Casey 9, Ballmer 8, Acker 4, M. Bernetti 4, Courtney 4, Florenzo 4.
Half: 30-15 A.
Oakland Mills 45, Reservoir 44
OM (2-0, 2-0): Long 13, Dent 11, Tapscott 7, Reyna 6, Williams 5, Bradley 2, Willis 1.
Re (0-2, 0-2): McDonald 19, Brooks 7, Toler 6, Young 4, Christian 2, Reilly 2, Franklin 2, Darius 2.