There aren't many plays drawn up to go the length of the court, down a point, with 7.1 seconds on the clock, and counting. But that's exactly what Highland Park did.
The Giants (1-0) rebounded a missed free throw and moved the ball upcourt quickly. Guard David Sachs took a pass as time wound down and drained a basket from just inside the 3-point arc with 1 second on the clock to give the Giants a season-opening 54-53 overtime victory over Prospect in the Joe Majkowski Thanksgiving Basketball Tournament in St. Viator's Cahill Gym Tuesday.
"That's the guy we want with the ball in his hands," said Highland Park coach Paul Harris of his junior guard. "We were very fortunate and excited to beat a good team like (Prospect)."
Prospect's Bobby Frasco and Sachs were the only players in double figures, both scoring 17 points. Frasco scored 13 in the second half, including the free throw that gave the Knights (1-1) a 53-52 lead, their first since early in the second quarter.
Highland Park's unique 2-3 trapping zone gave Prospect fits most of the game. The Giants forced 5 second-quarter turnovers and turned an 11-10 first quarter deficit into a 31-22 halftime lead. Sachs heated up with 8 point in the second quarter.
"The defense Highland Park plays is a difficult challenge," Prospect coach John Camardella said. "We came out flat, but I'm proud of how they came back."
The comeback took nearly the entire second half. Prospect slowly chipped away at the Highland Park lead and trailed 41-37 after three quarters. A pair of 3-point baskets by Kyle Beyak in the fourth quarter pulled the Knights to within 2, 45-43.
Frasco added a basket and a pair of free throws to counter free throw by Sachs and a basket by Jordan Krawitz to make it 48-47 with 3:43 left.
Ernest Kiseliovas drained a long 3-pointer with 2:30 left to tie the game at 50. The Knights held the ball the final minute-plus for the last shot, but Frasco's attempt missed, as did a follow by Nick Lazarz, forcing overtime.
Sachs and Frasco traded baskets to start the overtime, and the Knights once again held for a final shot. Frasco was fouled with 7.1 seconds left as he attempted a pass, making the first and missing the second.
"It's tough to come back against a zone," Frasco said. "It's hard getting shots. They're very well coached.
"Our defense didn't play well at all," Frasco said. "We gave up too many wide open layups."