Spartans Down Elder Panthers, Win 1st Div 1 Sectional Title

Posted on: March 2, 2022
Feb 25th 2022 saw the Turpin Spartans travel to West Clermont High to meet the #1 seeded Elder Panthers. It was the Sectional final and a rematch of a game where the Spartans prevailed. The Panthers came out hot, ready to avenge their only Ohio loss. The Spartans had multiple missed opportunities on offense. Panthers were able to convert on multiple trips down the floor- scoring inside or getting the call and making their FTs. End of 1st saw the Spartans down 5-11. McHale accounted for all of the Spartan's points,  2FTs and a 3.
2nd quarter saw the Spartans repeatedly attack the paint.  They weren't always successful. Hardewig made a contested jump shot. Selfridge made a corner 3, then later he drove to the basket, was fouled and made 2/2 FTs. But the Panthers kept scoring too, maintaining their lead. Marathe connected for a 3. Turpin down 19-28 at Halftime.
2nd half saw the teams trade ends.  Panthers defense was tough. Hardewig made a jumper inside the paint, this got him on track. Spartans started lighting it up from outside the arc. McHale and Hardewig got hot, connecting with successive 3s to close the gap, Turpin 33-35. McHale had the nice dish to Marathe for a layup. End of 3rd, Turpin was still down 35-40.
Start of the 4th quarter saw Selfridge drive baseline for 2. Hardewig and  Marathe then  made  successive 3s, closing the gap T 43-45. Hardewig,  red hot , hit another 3 for Turpin's first lead of the game 46-45! Elder answered right back with a deuce T 46-47. Once again Hardewig hit a 3, T 49-47. Elder came back in the closing seconds, missed a 3, but they grabbed the rebound and made a basket to tie it 49- 49. Turpin had one last possession- but they couldn't connect on the 3/4 court shot. Teams headed to OT!!
Overtime saw both teams miss opportunities. Elder looked to have the last possession of OT. They were fouled on the inbounds. Both teams were in the bonus. BUT Elder missed the front end of the 1 and 1, Hardewig grabbed the rebound and a quick timeout was called. Coach Slonim drew up a play. 6 seconds left, Inbound pass to Hardewig, he dribbled up the court, drew the double team at the last minute...Hardewig hits a THREEEEEEE! Turpin wins the  Sectional title and defeats the Elder Panthers for the 5th time in 3 years. Turpin 52-49. Turpin last won a Sectional title when they were Division 2, 2004. Coach Slonim was on that team.
Stats: Hardewig with 22pt, 6/10 from behind the arc,  McHale with 13pts, Marathe 8pts, Selfridge 7 pts
Rebounds -Hardewig with 4, McHale with 4
Assists- McHale with 6, Hardewig with 5