It took four quarters and two overtime periods of exciting high school basketball action before the Middletown Cavaliers boys' basketball could finally achieve a 47-45 victory over Caesar Rodney Thursday night in the second round of the Middletown Christmas Classic. In the opening round, Middletown lost to Glasgow 48-28, and CR lost to Tatnall 55-41.
The first half was a well-played, close contest, with Middletown earning an 11-5 lead after the first quarter and maintained a 19-15 lead at halftime.
Despite trailing through most of the first three quarters, The Riders fought back to forge a tie late in the game, thanks to the heroics of Mahda Brewah, who sank three of four free throws in the waning moments. CR's defense also did a great job, limiting the Cavaliers to a single basket in the fourth period. At the end of regulation, the big scoreboard read: 34-34.
The Cavaliers got two quick baskets in the first overtime including a nice shot by Khai Roberts, but again the Riders tied the score at 40 as the first four-minute overtime session expired.
Middletown again regained the lead to start the second OT as Darius Wade scored on a layup and Roberts built the lead to 46-42 on a pair of free throws with two minutes remaining. Brewah then hit two foul shots to close the gap to 46-44 and Antwan Miller hit one free throw to make the score 46-45.
With only 11 seconds left, Joe Bamfo hit the front end of a two shot foul to close the scoring at 47-45.
The Riders sent up a long distance shot that banged off the rim as time expired.
"Even though we lost, we fought hard the entire game and the two overtimes. We missed a couple of opportunities to take the lead and win the game, but we need to be more consistent, and that's been a problem all season for us," said Rider coach Donell Thomas.
"But I was happy that there is "no quit" on this team, we made mistakes, but we worked hard all night," he said.
Bamto led the Cavaliers in scoring with 14 points, Roberts had 13, and Wade and Sardayah Sambo both contributed ten points. The Riders' Deshawn Schuler led all scorers with 17, Brewah added 9, and Alex Kemp and Antwan Miller added 6 points apiece and Collin Moore had 5 points on the night.