Kenny Hasbrouck and his Cardinal Gibbons teammates were crushed when the buzzer sounded last night at Archbishop Spalding in Severn to end a double-overtime thriller won, 71-70, by the Cavaliers.
Hasbrouck missed a two-point jumper from the left that would have given the No. 8 Crusaders (12-3) a huge win over the top-ranked Cavaliers (10-1) with time running out.
"I got it off the way I wanted to, but I just didn't make it," said Hasbrouck, who was nursing a hip injury but scored 22 points.
"We knew we could beat 'em because they don't have anything we don't have."
All three Gibbons losses in the Baltimore Catholic League and Maryland Interscholastic Athletic Association A Conference have come in the final minutes. The other two were to No. 2 St. Frances and No. 4 Mount St. Joseph.
Last night, Spalding's Rudy Gay drove home his fifth dunk of the night with 50 seconds remaining in the second overtime for the margin of victory. Just two days after capping a triple double with 35 points in Sunday's victory over then-No. 1 St. Frances, he was held scoreless through the first quarter for the first time this season, but Gay finished with a game-high 27 points.
Gay took a nifty underhanded pass in the paint from point guard Jesse Brooks for the decisive points.
"It was a great pass," said Gay of Brooks, who had seven assists. "He throws a lot of them, and you just have to be ready for them.
"He just tried to finish the game, and I just helped him."
Hasbrouck then tried to finish it off for Gibbons after the Crusaders ran the clock down to the final seconds. In the middle backcourt, Hasbrouck took off for the left as Leon Williams set a pick.
His shot was off the rim.
"It was a classic, but unfortunately we came up on the short end," said Gibbons coach Bob Flynn, whose team scored the most points against Spalding of any team this season.
"We're proud of what we've built here in the last five years. We've proved we can compete with anybody and for the championship this year. We're five minutes away from being undefeated."
"He could have beat us," Gay said of Hasbrouck. "They're big inside, and I think they match up better with us than any other team in this league."
Hasbrouck, a quick and athletic 6-4 guard with a fine touch, scored all eight Gibbons points in the first overtime and finished with a team-high 22 points and eight rebounds.
"It's beyond me that Kenny Hasbrouck hasn't signed Division I with somebody," said Spalding coach Mike Glick. "He's a great player. I'm really proud of our effort the way we turned the ball over in overtime and still kept our heads up to win."
Gibbons had the ball at the end of the 59-59 regulation and after the first overtime with the score tied at 67, but couldn't get off the winning shot. Gibbons had an 11-point lead in the first quarter.
Williams, Gibbons' 6-foot-8 center, had 20 points and a game-high 10 rebounds. Brett Foelber, a 6-6 forward, had 20 points and eight rebounds.
"I don't think we came out unfocused, I just think Gibbons came out on fire," Glick said.
"They were getting ready to run us out of our gym. We were very, very fortunate to respond and come back to win."