Susquehannock's Adam Hedgeland hit the game-winning 3-pointer with 31 seconds remaining
It was a situation Adam Hedgeland had never been in before.
Susquehannock was trailing Gettysburg by one with less than a minute to play on the road Wednesday, and the junior received a pass in transition near the 3-point line. While he's one of Susquehannock's top shooters, Hedgeland isn't used to getting the ball in crunch-time situations.
That didn't stop Hedgeland from taking a shot. The junior nailed a go-ahead 3-pointer with 31 seconds remaining that proved to be the game-winning basket in a 51-45 Susquehannock win.
"Well I know I can knock them down, and if I'm open I'm going to take it," Hedgeland said. "I've never really felt like that before but it's one of the greatest feelings you'll ever feel. It's going open people's eyes about us."
Hedgeland's 3 was the final dagger in what was a pretty big upset win for Susquehannock (5-8, 3-6 YAIAA Division II). When the two teams nicknamed the Warriors met on Dec. 11, Gettysburg won easily, 74-51.
What was the difference this time? According to Susquehannock coach John Zerfing, his Warriors executed much better defensively and didn't get intimidated despite going into halftime down by nine.
Zerfing also said he was confident having the ball in Hedgeland's hands at the end because the junior has committed himself to becoming one of the team's top shooters.
"So proud that we were able to battle back. We talk about the next play, not worrying about the last play or the score, it's about the next play," Zerfing said. "Adam is our best 3-point shooter but he'd been struggling a little bit before tonight. It's tremendous for him, and it's going to help his confidence even more. He stays after every practice to work on his shooting, so this isn't something that happens by accident."
With less than a minute remaining, Susquehannock's Adam Hedgeland got the ball in transition and hit the game-winning 3-pointer.
The game was just as disappointing for Gettysburg as it was pleasing for Susquehannock. Gettysburg (9-5, 4-5 YAIAA Division II), entered Wednesday coming off a 59-33 loss over Eastern York last Friday and was expecting to get back on track.
But Jeff Bair's team looked unfocused at times, especially in the second half. Gettysburg scored just four points in the third quarter but still led, 45-44, with under a minute to go when Cade Eckhart's missed free throw led to Hedgeland's winning shot.
Missed free throws were one of many things that bothered Bair about Wednesday's game. He also said Gettysburg has slipped on defense after executing well in that area early in the season.
"We're not very good right now," Bair said. "Especially defensively and executing. Missed a lot of layups, lot of foul shots. Just lackadaisical play and more concerned with the officials than what's going on. That's not very good basketball. That's on me, I've got to do a better job"
Bair isn't ready to write the season off, but said that his team needs to get things figured out soon. With four seniors in his starting lineup, Bair expected Gettysburg to come out with more fire against Susquehannock.
"I thought we were ready to play, just didn't finish it," Bair said. "We're going to run out of time if we don't get it straightened out. We are 9-5, and just reeling the wrong direction right now."
Jordan McMillion 4 2-2 11, Josh Stoneberg 3 2-2 11, Voltaggio 3 0-1 6, Tannura 3 1-4 7, Reider 0 0-0 0, Hedgeland 3 0-0 8, Mahan 2 0-0 4, Adams 2 0-0 4. Totals — 20 5-9 51.
Ravaughn Dillard 4 5-8 13, Marquise Camel 6 1-2 14, Lampe 1 2-2 4, Weikert 1 4-6 6, Ringler 3 0-0 6, Biggins 1 0-0 2, Sherman 0 0-0 0, Eckhart 0 0-1 0. Totals — 16 12-18 45.
Susquehannock _ 9 _ 9 _ 12 _ 21 _ — _ 51
Gettysburg _ 12 _ 15 _ 4 _ 14 _ — _ 45
3-point goals — Susquehannock 6 (Stoneberg 3, Hedgeland 2, McMillion), Gettysburg 1 (Camel)
JV score — Gettysburg 57, Susquehannock 46