At least it wasn't six overtimes.
Unlike the grueling game Hinsdale Central's boys basketball team played in its holiday tournament, it took the Red Devils "only" two overtimes to beat visiting Glenbard West 54-51 in Friday's West Suburban Silver matchup.
Chris Eck forced overtime with a 3-pointer at the end of regulation, only to be matched by Kevin Nelson's game-tying 3-pointer at the end of the first extra period for Glenbard West.
In the second overtime Jack Hoiberg got a bucket and a pair of free throws in the final minute to seal the victory for Hinsdale Central (7-6, 3-0).
"We battle," said Eck, who scored 12 points. "Whenever we're down by a couple points we work hard and come back. Luckily we came out on top today."
Hinsdale Central missed 6 of 10 free-throw attempts in the fourth quarter, allowing Glenbard West (7-8, 0-4) to twice take a 3-point lead in the final two minutes on Alex Pihlstrom's three-point play and Evan Taylor's free throws. With five seconds left, though, Eck knocked down the clutch 3-pointer.
The Red Devils built a 4-point lead in the first overtime, but Taylor scored and Nelson hit the tying 3 for his only points of the night.
The lead changed hands three times in the second overtime when Eck scored and was answered by Connor Mullins, who gave the Hilltoppers a 52-51 lead with 1:35 left.
After Hoiberg put the Red Devils back on top, Glenbard West missed a pair of free throws. Hoiberg made both his attempts from the line, and the Hilltoppers missed a game-tying 3-point attempt at the buzzer.
"Both teams played hard, we just made a couple mistakes at the end and that was the difference," said Glenbard West coach Tim Hoder. "I'm proud of how our kids played. I just wish we could have closed out better."
Hoiberg led Hinsdale Central with 19 points. Taylor had 19 points and 10 rebounds for Glenbard West while Mullins scored 16 points and Pihlstrom tallied all 11 of his points after halftime.
"Both teams played gritty and kind of mirrored each other," said Red Devils coach Nick Latorre. "It wasn't pretty."
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