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November 20, 2012

H.S. BOYS' BASKETBALL: Borden wins double-overtime thriller in opener

Kirchgessner leads Braves to 79-76 victory over Eastern

PEKIN — Billy Kirchgessner scored 10 of his team-high 19 points in two overtime periods as Borden completed a 79-76 come-from-behind victory over Eastern in both teams’ opener on Tuesday.

Kirchgessner, who also had five assists and four rebounds, was 3-for-3 from the field and 4-for-4 from the line in the two overtime sessions.

Kirchgessner scored the first six points of the second overtime to give the Braves a 74-68 lead. After R.J. Jackson hit a pair of 3-pointers to cut the Borden advantage to 77-76 with 12 seconds left, Kirchgessner knocked down two a pair of free throws with 5.3 seconds left for a 79-76 Borden lead.

Eastern failed to get a shot off in the final seconds, giving Borden the thrilling victory.

Borden hit 39 of its 46 foul shots in the contest, including two clutch free throws by Josh Ruedinger with 3.7 seconds left in regulation to force the first overtime at 60-apiece.

Borden appeared to have the victory in the first overtime when it led 68-63 with 24 seconds left. However, Alex Doebler hit a 3 for his only points of the contest to cut the Braves’ lead to 68-66.

After the inbound pass dribbled off of Kirchgessner’s leg and out of bounds, Jackson hit a shot at the buzzer to forced the second overtime.

Borden outscored the Musketeers 22-12 in the fourth quarter to force overtime. In the final period of regulation, the Braves made 16-of-18 free throws and Michael Lynch, who had 17 points and eight rebounds, scored eight points.

Both teams came out of the gates on fire as each hit its first four shots of the season.

Jackson, who led all scorers with 32 points on 13-of-19 shooting, scored nine of the Musketeers’ 15 first-quarter points, including their first six on a pair of three-pointers. McCoy scored 10 of the Braves’ 16 points in the opening period.

Kirchgessner had a scoreless first quarter, but he contributed with four assists, two rebounds and a steal.

Borden seemed to take control early in the second quarter. The Braves took a 19-15 lead on a Ruedinger three-point play just 12 seconds into the second. They extended the advantage to 22-17 on a Kirchgessner 3 just 34 seconds later.

Led by Jackson and Jude Olesh, the Musketeers went on a 13-5 run leading into the half. Olesh hit a 3 on an assist from Jackson, then Jackson knocked down a long-range bomb on a feed from Olesh to tie the score at 25-apiece.

Olesh then gave the Musketeers a 28-25 lead on his second 3, also on an assist from Jackson. A Jackson drive made it 30-25 before Kirchgessner hit a pair of free throws with 1.5 seconds left before the half to cut the gap to 30-27.

At the start of the third, it appeared that the Braves may take control after a Cody Bachman free throw and a Kirchgessner drive. However, Eastern went on an 8-2 run — with four points coming from Jackson — forcing a Nash timeout at the 3:49 mark.

It didn’t work. Jackson continued to scorch the Braves with eight points in the period and the Musketeers had an 18-11 advantage in the period to take a 48-38 lead after three quarters.

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