ASHTABULA TOWNSHIP — As Andrew Konczal’s 3 from the corner dropped to tie Edgewood’s contest with Perry at 52 with 57.6 seconds left, the home Warrior crowd erupted.
As loud as it was in that moment on senior night, it was just as silent when Perry’s Zack Buescher put back a Cale Burdyshaw missed free throw with 4.5 seconds to give the Pirates a 54-52 non-conference road win.
“I went on the right side because I’m a lefty and I just saw the ball bounce off the back of the iron, jumped up as high as I could, got it and went up with it,” Buescher said. “It was awesome, it was senior night for them. It was good to come in here and get a last-second win.”
Buescher was fouled on the shot and missed the ensuing free throw and a Dylan McCaleb heave from the backcourt bounced off the backboard as time expired.
Buescher’s late-game heroics were set up by Perry (9-6) running 42.8 seconds off the clock before first-year Pirates coach Al Iacofano called timeout.
Perry came out with an isolation play for Burdyshaw and a reach-in foul 20-feet from the basket was called on Edgewood (11-6), sending Burdyshaw to the line for a one-and-one, which he missed.
In what was a physical, back-and-forth contest, Warriors coach John Bowler didn’t like to see the game decided by an official’s call. He also added that the Pirates’ patience on offense caused his team to foul at times.
“I really hate when the refs put it in their hands with 10 seconds to play in the game,” he said. “You should let the players play. These kind of man-to-man, physical games for us, we’ve learned now how to play with that type of game so it doesn’t bother us as much.