Grafton's last-second shot lifts Spoilers over Thompson
Beau Feltman was in the right place at the right time.
The Grafton 6-foot-6 junior grabbed an airball and converted the offensive rebound into the game-winning points Thursday. Feltman's basket with 1.1 seconds remaining gave Grafton a 58-57 semifinal win against Thompson in the Region 2 boys high school basketball tournament at Betty Engelstad Sioux Center.
Feltman leaped for the basketball and put up an off-balance shot for the tying and winning points. "I saw the shot, jumped up for the rebound and put it in the hole,'' Feltman said.
"I knew I had enough time to get the shot off. I felt I got pushed in mid-air. I wasn't real confident it was going in. I was under the basket and off balance.''
Grafton coach Riley Lillemoen said it was more than just right place-right time. "Beau kept battling. He had to make a heckuva play in traffic for that basket,'' Lillemoen said.
The Spoilers were down 56-50 after Thompson's Tyler Hegg scored on a drive with 1:58 remaining. But Grafton cut the deficit after Thompson was called for a flagrant foul. Marcus Niemann hit both free throws with 1:29 left, then drove for a basket nine seconds later to cut the deficit to 56-54.
"That (flagrant foul) was a big play,'' Thompson coach Brandy George said. "It cost us four points at a big time in the game. But we still had chances at the end. We didn't execute down the stretch.''
Marcus Hughes hit a free throw for a 57-54 Tommies lead, but Riley Hanson drove for a basket with 43 seconds left to pull Grafton within 57-56.
The game was close throughout as the quarter-break scores indicated. Thompson led 16-10 and 34-28 at the first two quarter stops, with the teams tied 41-41 after three.
Niemann finished with a game-high 19 points, 14 of those in the second half, none were bigger than the four points off the flagrant foul. "Those aren't easy free throws, Marcus stepping up and hitting both with nobody around him,'' Lillemoen said. "He took the team on his back in the second half.''
Hanson added 14 points, hitting four treys, while Dalton Albrecht scored 12 and Feltman had eight of his 10 points in the final quarter.
Hegg's 13 points led the Tommies. Hayden Overby and Cadyn Schwabe each scored 12, with Schwabe getting his 1,000th career point, and Cole Sorby had 11.