Carey on, Mohigans

Guard’s shot gives MHS thrilling win


    CHARLESTON — Chris Carey could not sleep Tuesday night. He tossed and turned as he visualized Morgantown High’s first-round game against South Charleston.
    On the court Wednesday, Carey also tossed and turned, as well as twist, flop, stretch, bend and dive.
    He was basketball’s version of Stretch Armstrong, and he also nailed a doozie of a basket nobody in the Charleston Civic Center will forget.
    Carey picked up a loose ball off his own missed 3-pointer and put it back in with just 1.3 seconds remaining to give the fourth-seeded Mohigans a 62-60 victory over the Black Eagles in the state tournament.
    “I think I was the last guy to go to sleep last night,” Carey said. “I thought about taking that shot last night, except when I thought about it the 3-pointer went in.”
    MHS guard Dusty Kerns hit two free throws with 38 s e c o n d s remaining in the game to tie the score, 60-60. It was just the second time the game was tied in a contest South C h a r l e s t o n never trailed until Carey’s heroics.
    In fact, S o u t h Charleston (16-9) had taken an 8-0 lead to start the game and led by 11 points on two different occasions. The bad start was similar to the Mohigans’ (20-5) start in last year’s state tournament, in which MHS trailed 11-0 to Huntington in a firstround loss.
    “It felt like deja vu all over again,” MHS coach Tom Yester said. “The thought definitely crossed my mind.”
    But, as Yester pointed out, “These kids didn’t quit. They would not go away. They clawed until the very end.”
    After South Charleston took its lead out to 54-47 midway through the fourth quarter, John Oliver hit his second 3-pointer of the game, which was followed up by a Marlan Robinson 3-pointer. All of a sudden, the Black Eagles’ lead was down to 54-53.
    Robinson, who had 22 points and five rebounds, hit another 3-pointer with 2:47 left to tie the game for the first time, 56-56. Kern’s free throws would tie it again, before South Charleston’s Will Collins missed a shot with 22 seconds left that was eventually rebounded by Carey, who finished with a gamehigh 28 points and 10 rebounds.
    There was no timeout called and Carey had 18 seconds to fulfill the dream he had the night before.
    Here are those final 18 seconds in Carey’s own words:
    “Marlan set a pick for me and I wanted to use it, but (S.C guard Klint) Frazier really played it well and I had to go left,” Carey said. “I’m not as comfortable going to my left. I kind of stumbled and slipped some. I knew it was a tough shot and I knew it wasn’t going to go in from the moment it left my hand.
    “I didn’t know how much time was left, but I followed my shot. I could see where it was going to hit. Andrew Dunn made a great play by tipping the ball toward me on the rebound and he kept it alive. The ball came to me and I just threw it up there and thankfully it went in.”
    South Charleston called timeout after Carey’s shot, and Marcus Smith caught Dominique Green’s long pass and nearly hit a 3-pointer as time expired, but the shot came hard off the backboard.
    “It was about as interesting a finish I’ve ever been involved in,” Yester said. “It was a great clutch play by Chris.”
Tournament glance
PARKERSBURG (AP) — Pairings for the boys state high school basketball tournament at the Charleston Civic Center:
Quarterfinals Wednesday No. 4 Morgantown 62, No. 5 South Charleston 60 No. 1 Huntington 73, No. 8 Preston 37 Thursday No. 3 Woodrow Wilson (17-7) vs. No. 6 Jefferson (19-5), 11:15 a.m. No. 2 Capital (20-4) vs. No. 7 Buckhannon-Upshur (18-7), 7:15 p.m.
Semifinals Friday Morgantown vs. Huntington, 5:30 p.m. Woodrow Wilson-Jefferson winner vs. Capital-Buckhannon-Upshur winner, 9 p.m. Championship Saturday Semifinal winners, 7:15 p.m.

Jonah Myers/The Dominion Post Morgantown High’s Chris Carey shoots the game-winning shot over South Charleston’s Marcus Smith. Carey rebounded his own miss and put it in with 1.3 seconds left, lifting the Mohigans to a 62-60 win Wednesday. Carey’s basket gave MHS its only lead of the game.

    Green 2-6 2-4 6, Daniel 8-14 1-1 19, Collins 3-8 2-2 9, Smith 7-12 3-4 17, Frazier 4-12 0-0 9, Williams 0-0 0-0 0, Mullens 0-0 0-0 0, B.Broyles 0-0 0-0 0, Booker 0-0 0-0 0. Totals 24-52 8-11 60. MORGANTOWN HIGH (20-5)
    Lindsay 1-3 0-1 2, Oliver 2-7 0-0 6, Carey 9-23 8-12 28, Law 0-0 0-0 0, Robinson 6-12 6-6 22, Siriwardane 0-0 0-0 0, Kerns 0-3 2-2 2, Hatfield 0-1 0-0 0, Dunn 1-2 0-0 2. Totals 19-51 16-21 62. South Charleston 19 13 15 13—60 Morgantown 11 18 13 20—62
    3-Point goals—South Charleston 4-14 (Daniel 2-7, Collins 1-2, Frazier 1-4, Smith 0-1), Morgantown 8-24 (Robinson 4-7, Oliver 2-5, Carey 2-9, Kerns 0-1, Lindsay 0-2). Fouled out—none. Rebounds—South Charleston 33 (Green, Smith 10), Morgantown 34 (Carey 11).