It was just one shot, but it made all the difference.
After going back and forth with Copperas Cove for a majority of the second half and playing to a 52-52 tie following overtime, it appeared host Shoemaker was in for another four minutes of battling.
That did not happen, though.
Grey Wolves junior Romeo Postell opened the second overtime with an immediate basket in the paint, triggering a 7-1 outburst and propelling Shoemaker to a 66-59 victory.
Following the game, Postell admitted he felt the momentum change when his shot fell.
“When I made it,” the forward said, “I heard the bench and the crowd get worked up, and I knew we were about to take off.”
And the Grey Wolves did.
After being limited to just 23 points in the second half and first over
time, Shoemaker exploded for 14 points in the final four minutes of competition, but no basket was more critical than Postell’s, according to Grey Wolves head coach Brandon Gilbert.
“Romeo’s basket finally gave us a little bit of energy,” he said. “We’d been waiting on that all night, and he came through.
“That was the spark we needed.”
Postell finished with 10 points, including four in the second overtime, but he received plenty of help.
Led by junior Jwan Roberts’ game-high 18 points, four Grey Wolves recorded double-digit points, including Du’Wain Thomas and Ta’Veon Sevaatasi, who finished with 16 and 11 points, respectively. Additionally, teammate Tavon McCorvey had nine points.
Early on, it appeared Shoemaker (15-10, 6-4 District 8-6A) would earn an easy victory.
After Postell scored the game’s opening points, the Grey Wolves pulled away to a 7-3 advantage and took a 17-8 cushion into the second quarter. The lead swelled to 24-10 before the Bulldawgs began to rally, trimming the deficit to four points, 29-25, by halftime.
Less than a minute into the third quarter, Jyhlil Rice’s layup gave Copperas Cove its first lead of the game at 30-29, beginning a stretch that saw seven ties and seven leads changes during the duration of the contest.
“We were very fortunate to come out with a victory,” Gilbert said, “but I’m happy with that.”
The outcome extends a streak of tough losses for Copperas Cove (22-10, 1-9).
The Bulldawgs, who were led by senior Neyland Block’s 15-point, six-rebound, four-assist outing, lost their ninth consecutive game, including six by three points or less and two in overtime.
“There is some talent on that team,” Gilbert said, “and their record doesn’t indicate how good they are by any means.
“That is a really good team.”
Postell feels the same way about his squad.
“This shows just how good we can be,” he said.
“We had a full roster today, so pulling out a tough win like this shows what our potential is.”
Tuesday’s 8-6A boys
- Ellison 76, Harker Heights 67
- Killeen 65, San Angelo Central 63
- Shoemaker 66, Copperas Cove 59, 2OT
- Waco Midway 58, Belton 39
- San Angelo Central at Belton, 6 p.m.
- Copperas Cove at Harker Heights, 7 p.m.
- Ellison at Killeen, 7 p.m.
- Shoemaker at Waco Midway, 7 p.m.