Fletcher's 3 lifts Marmion over Glenbard South
Matt Fletcher admitted he was not the first choice to take his team's last shot.
However, Marmion's basketball team was certainly pleased with the result.
Fletcher, a 6-4 junior forward, connected on a 3-pointer with 20 seconds remaining to lift the Cadets (7-4) to a 47-44 nonconference victory over Glenbard South (3-9) Saturday night at Alumni Hall in Aurora.
Senior forward Jake Esp penetrated and kicked the ball out to Fletcher, who didn't hesitate to take the 3-point attempt from the corner.
"It's an isolation (play) for Jake (Esp) in the middle," said Fletcher. "We really didn't have a true shooter in so I was the one to stick in the spot."
"Normally we try to have either Hunter (Weber) or Jake (Ruddy) or Jordan (Glasgow) out there," said Cadets coach Joe Currie. "It's great for Matt because he has been struggling. Hopefully it will be a confidence booster for him."
It was the first career game-winning shot for Fletcher, who scored all 7 of his points in the fourth quarter when Marmion outscored Glenbard South 13-4.
"It feels good," said Fletcher, who added 6 rebounds and 3 assists. "Right after I took it, I felt myself getting goose bumps. This is probably a once-in-a-lifetime thing."
At one point early in the third quarter, the Cadets found themselves trailing by as many as 16.
Glenbard South, led by Tyler Scott (11 points, 3 assists) and Charlie Bair (10 points, 5 rebounds), grabbed a 27-17 halftime advantage and stretched it to 33-17 after back-to-back inside buckets from Bair.
"We just didn't come out with the intensity and energy that we needed to," said Currie.
The Cadets answered with outside shooting as junior Hunter Weber came off the bench to drain back-to-back 3-pointers to trim the deficit to 40-32 late in the third quarter.
"That's what we need to have him do," Currie said of Weber, who finished with 9 points. "When he's left open, he can knock them down. He was a great springboard for us."
"We needed energy and Hunter really provided that with two quick ones (3s) off the bench," said Fletcher.
Scott's layup gave the Raiders a 44-40 lead with 3:31 remaining before the Cadets tied it on a baseline layup and 2 free throws from Esp (14 points).
After the Raiders misfired on a pair of 3-point attempts, the Cadets cashed in on the game-winning opportunity.
"We took it possession by possession," said Currie, whose team held the Raiders to 2 of 11 shooting in the final quarter. "We wanted to get pressure on them and create some traps. We were trying to do that in the first half as well but we just didn't have the energy that we needed."
Glasgow added 13 points and 4 rebounds for the Cadets, who face a busy stretch to begin 2015.
"It doesn't get any easier," said Currie. "We've got two games next weekend and the following weekend we've got four games in the Martin Luther King tournament."
Billy Bair chipped in with 8 points, 7 rebounds and 3 steals for the Raiders.
"We kind of let it slip away and they definitely took it from us," said Raiders coach Wade Hardtke. "I thought overall we played well. We showed our youth down the stretch and played not to lose instead of playing to win."