MOUNT VERNON — The one who ruled the basketball court on Friday was a Duke.
Mount Vernon senior Duke Cunningham hit a game-tying jumper and drew a foul with 6.4 seconds to go in Friday’s game against Big Walnut. After hitting the foul shot, he and the rest of the Yellow Jackets stopped the Eagles from getting off a shot before the buzzer, preserving a 38-37 come-from-behind win.
Trailing for most of the second half and for the entire fourth period, the Jackets never let the Eagles pull away. Trailing by three, Cunningham narrowed the gap to two after hitting one of two free-throw attempts with 34 seconds remaining.
Big Walnut’s Adam Shaheen drove straight to the basket and missed the layup attempt. Mount Vernon’s Alex Glibert pulled the ball down, and his team hurried up the court for the final shot.
“When you bring it down in transition, you can either call timeout or let them play,” said Mount Vernon head coach Kurt Kaufman. “You have to have faith that your guys are going to make plays. When I saw they (the Eagles) were scattered and not back in a specific defense, I thought that we shouldn’t let them get set up. And Duke made a senior play and sealed the deal.”
After a few passes, Cunningham had the ball and drove to the bucket. Big Walnut’s Michael Buckles ran to block the lane but, when contact was made, the foul was called.
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