Chase Green saw the entire Perkins student section running at him, and just let out a scream to the ceiling.
Green isn't really sure what happened at the end of overtime in Saturday's key Sandusky Bay Conference game against visiting Huron.
Quite frankly, most in attendance or on the floor felt the same way.
Despite having their top two leaders in scoring and rebounding on the bench after fouling out, the Pirates rallied from a 58-53 deficit in the extra session to win on a Green putback, with the ball falling through the cylinder as the clock struck zero for a stunning 60-58 win.
“It was probably a stroke of luck, I really don't know what happened there, but I'll remember it forever,” Green said of the final shot. “I saw Dale (Irby) bring it up, and it was going to him, so when he started to pullup, I thought he was taking it, then Austin Spitler got in the corner and missed, and I happened to be there and it went in.
“I've got chills still, just talking about it,” he added. “When Nic (Williams) and Kyle (Lewis) went out, we still kept our heads up and kept playing, and it paid off at the end.”
With the win, Perkins improved to 10-2 overall and 8-0 in the SBC, and currently have a two-game lead over Huron (6-4, 4-2), Clyde (8-2, 5-2) and St. Mary Central Catholic (9-2, 4-2).
“We're happy with where we're at,” Perkins coach Scott McVeigh said of the standings. “It's the first game of the second half for us, and that was a good team we beat. Huron will do nothing but get better, but this group had a lot of adversity tonight and stepped up.
“They just kept playing,” McVeigh said of his team. “We were able to get it overtime, and were able to extend it even further, and took advantage of some careless turnovers they had and pulled through. Chase really made an athletic play, an incredible play, there at the end.”
The game started ominously for Huron, with the Pirates connecting on their first eight shots of the game in rolling out to a 15-4 lead. But as foul trouble began to mount for Perkins, with Williams, Lewis and Irby all with three fouls in the second quarter, the Tigers got hot and outscored the hosts 19-6 in the quarter to take a 30-27 halftime lead.
Both teams struggled with the basketball most of the night, and the third quarter was no exception. After a slow start for both teams, the Pirates got the momentum and the lead back on a 3-pointer by Aleck Speer and a basket inside from Lewis to go up 38-33 with 2:26 left in the third.
Trailing 42-38 entering the final quarter, Huron's Keegan Bollenbacher hit a deep 3, then after a Matt Schweinfurth answer from beyond the arc, came back with two more in between a Williams basket to bring the Tigers even at 49 with 4:53 left.
The Tigers eventually went up 51-49 on a basket by Adam Storer with 3:55 left, but did not cash in on opportunities to extend the lead, allowing Williams to tie it at 51 with 1:32 left. Both teams had several chances in the final 90 seconds, but the ballhandling issues for both teams struck again, and two Perkins shot attempts in the closing seconds came up short to force overtime.
Williams immediately scored to open up the overtime, and in the process passed Kyle Hallock as the all-time points leader at Perkins. But with the game tied at 53, Bollenbacher again struck with his sixth 3-pointer of the game, and was followed by a deep jumper from Ryan VanCauwenbergh with a little more than two minutes to go.
That put Perkins on the ropes down 58-53.But Huron again couldn't cash in, missing a pair of layups and committing costly turnovers. Green and Williams had made it 58-57 with 1:41 left. However, moments later Williams fouled out after Lewis had already fouled out with three minutes left in regulation, putting a combined 31 points and 19 rebounds on the bench.
An Irby free throw with 41 seconds left tied it at 58, and another turnover by the Tigers set up the final sequence for Green's game-winner.
“We didn't execute. We had it and let it get away with three turnovers and two missed layups at the end,” Huron coach Bobby James said. “End of game execution hurt us. We have lost two games now in overtime, and we have to get better from it. We cannot have this at the end of games.
“But there's nothing you can do now,” he added. “It was a big finish for Perkins. And they played hard, but we just let it get away.”
Williams finished with a game-high 27 points and 11 rebounds before fouling out, and takes 1,300 career points into the final stages of his career at Perkins.
“It's not something you really think about, but it's a nice accomplishment,” Williams said of the new scoring record. “It's been a lot of hard work for four years and not taking anything for granted.”
As the reigning two-time SBC Outstanding Performer, Williams admitted it was extremely difficult to have to watch the final seconds play out.
“It was a crazy moment, a weird feeling of being helpless,” he said. “I was nervous for the guys, but then watching Chase make it and everyone go crazy was a good feeling. We know we're up two games now, but we don't want to look at it that way. We want to win every SBC game still.”
Perkins will visit Edison Monday in a rescheduled game from Friday's snowstorm, while the Tigers host SMCC on Thursday.