SELINSGROVE -- The Selinsgrove boys basketball team didn't leave anything on the court Thursday night against Greenwood, it happened to leave everything at the line.
The Seals put together a valiant second-half effort, but in the fourth quarter free throws paid dividends for the Wildcats. And it wasn't only in the final few minutes, but for the entire game as the discrepancy in foul shooting made all the difference.
Greenwood was 19-for-23 at the line, including a solid 10-for-12 performance at the stripe in the final quarter leading to a 54-45 nonleague victory. Selinsgrove was a paltry 5-for-15 at the charity stripe.
"The foul shooting was great in the fourth quarter and when you make them in the final quarter you usually win," said Greenwood coach Kent Houser. "This was a tough environment to play in and I was very pleased with our composure late. We never looked like we panicked."
"Every time we clawed back and get even or within two, they made their shots when we put them on the line," Selinsgrove coach Ray Moyer said. "Give them credit, they made them when they had to. I really liked our energy though, we made a nice run but couldn't close it out."
After erasing a nine-point halftime deficit in the third quarter and getting within a possession with less than two minutes to play, the points wasted at the line down the stretch played a vital role in the outcome. Justin Keiser who led the Seals with 10 points was just 1-for-6 at the line in the fourth and 3-for-9 overall. Greenwood used a few of those key misses to keep the lead late after Selinsgrove tied the score at 40 with 5:44 play.
For as hopeful of a start that it was for Selinsgrove, the finish was less to be desired. The Seals jumped out to an early 9-2 lead in the first four minutes, before the Wildcats responded with a 14-2 run to close the quarter. Once it had the lead, Greenwood never gave it back, being tied twice after the opening eight minutes.