Seymour boys pull off exciting finish for win

A furious comeback over the final minutes of the fourth quarter lifted the Seymour boys basketball team to a stirring 36-35 victory over Charlestown on Friday night.

The Owls scored nine straight points during the game’s final 2 minutes, 44 seconds, overcoming an eight-point Charlestown lead. Keyed by steals by Charlie Longmeier and Marcus Brooks, Eli Meyer capped Seymour’s comeback by calmly making two free throws with 10 seconds left on the clock.

Meyer then secured the game-clinching rebound when a 3-pointer by Charlestown’s Matthew Henning bounced harmlessly off the rim as the final seconds clicked off.

“We didn’t play very well until the last 4 minutes, but we were able to put the bad plays behind us and move forward,” Seymour coach Kirk Manns said. “If we can continue to do that, we’ll continue to grow as a team.”

Before their frenetic, late-game heroics, the Owls appeared to have given Friday’s game away. Leading 27-22 with 2:38 left in the third quarter, Seymour fell into a mood-darkening scoreless drought that lasted nearly 8 minutes.

Charlestown took full advantage of Seymour’s struggles, going on a momentum-turning 13-0 run that gave the Pirates a seemingly commanding 35-27 lead with just 2:57 left in the game.

“An eight-point lead in a game as slow as that is a big lead,” Manns said. “Give credit to Charlestown. There’s not much energy in this gym anyway (due to crowd restrictions), but they really took all of the energy out of the game. Offensively, they slowed the game down, which slowed us down.”

Indeed, Charlestown held an 8-6 lead at the end of the first quarter. Seymour “exploded” for 13 second-quarter point to take a 19-17 into half time.

Facing the Pirates’ margin with less than three minutes to go, Seymour finally broke its scoring slump when Meyer made a layup to close the gap to 35-29.

Landon Fritsch then drained an important 3-pointer with 2:04 to go, shaving the deficit to 35-32.

A steal by Brooks killed what appeared to be a promising possession for Charlestown. Longmeier then knocked away a Pirate pass that led to a fast-break layup by Casey Regruth that narrowed the score to a single point with 45 seconds left.

Good team defense by Seymour then caused a Charlestown 5-second violation on an inbounds play with 37 seconds remaining. The Owls worked the ball inside to Meyer, who was fouled at the basket.

Meyer and Regruth led the Owls with nine points each. Brooks followed with six points, while freshman Bret Perry came off the bench to score five, his first varsity points.

Friday’s victory extended Seymour’s winning streak against Charlestown (2-5) to four straight, though the previous three wins were comfortable double-digits wins. The victory also bumped the Owls’ season record (5-5) back to the .500 level.

“This was a good lesson for us,” Manns said, referring to a week of less-than-inspiring practices. “We’ve got to improve every single day. Not just every game, but every day.”

Box score

At Seymour

Seymour 36, Charlestown 35

Seymour (5-5): Eli Meyer 3 3-3 9, Casey Regruth 4 0-0 9, Marcus Brooks 2 2-2 6, Bret Perry 2 0-0 5, Landon Fritsch 1 0-0 3, Charlie Longmeier 1 0-0 2, Andrew Levine 1 0-0 2, Dylan Fields 0 0-0 0. Totals: 14 5-5 36.
Charlestown (2-5): Ty Crace 4 1-2 11, Kyle Craig 4 0-0 8, Brayden Crawford 2 1-1 5, Clayton Rothbauer 2 0-0 5, Matthew Henning 2 0-0 4, Brody Wagers 1 0-0 2, Chase Benner 0 0-0 0, Jake Helton 0 0-0 0, Matthew McCoy 0 0-0 0, Brock Cook 0 0-0 0. Totals 15 2-3 35.
3-point goals: C (Crace 2, Rothbauer), S (Fritsch, Regruth, Perry)
Rebounds: C 18 (Craig 4), S 19 (Meyer 4, Regruth 3, Brooks 3)
Turnovers: C 9, S 9
Fouls: C 9, S 11Junior varsity

Seymour 40, Charlestown 19
Seymour: Bret Perry 15, Donovyn Thomas 11, Josh Rennekamp 4, A.J. Harrell 4, Jack Pennington 4, Evan Smith 2.