LOUDONVILLE — With under 90 seconds to play, Gloversville’s Dom Dorman found Mariano DiCaterino at the right wing. The senior knocked down a deep three to give the Dragons a lifeline.
They scored another two and cut Troy’s lead to four with less than a minute to play in the Section II Class A boys’ basketball quarterfinals. After a quick foul, with one to give, they knocked an in-bounds pass loose.
But, a Troy player recovered and called a timeout. The Flying Horsemen reset, and a possession later ended a steal with an emphatic slam dunk to seal their 70-64 victory at Siena’s UHY Center Sunday.
“I thought our players gave full effort,” said Gloversville head coach Ed Collar.
“Sometimes you go back and you try to pick apart what you did wrong, what you could have did more,” he added, “but it just boils down sometimes to they made the shots and we missed the open looks that we had.”
The Dragons made six 3-pointers throughout the game — five from Dorman and DiCaterino, but five of six overall came in the first half. Those early field goals from deep helped keep pace with a Troy attack that focused on dribble penetration.
Other than the Flying Horses’ leading scorer eighth grader Stetson Merritt, who finished with 22 points, including three 3-pointers, they made all but one shot from inside the arc.
Troy head coach John Killian said his team watched film of the Dragons’ first-round game against Mohonasen to look for chances to pick up points, and winning battles inside came up.
“We had 13 days off and we really worked on getting to the offensive boards,” he said. “I think that helped us today.”
Troy scored the first five points of the third quarter to push out its lead to 15 after a commanding first half. Then, Gloversville senior James Collar started calling for the ball.
“At that time, just being this could be my last game, I’m thinking, if we’re going to lose, I’m not going to let us lose, so I thought, do everything I can in my power to get us back in the game and give us a chance to win,” James Collar said.
He was the facilitator throughout the first two quarters with eight points and four assists, but his second-half efforts kept the game within reach time and time again.
The senior hit his team’s first shot of the second half at 5:23 of the third then another a minute later, and then a third in a row 20 seconds after that. He finished the quarter with 13 en route to a game-high 32 points — shooting 14 for 15 from the free-throw line.
“I thought [James] played with a lot of heart. He finished strong, and his scoring kept us in the game, and his buckets were energizing us to play defense,” Ed Collar said. “The whole team responded off his tenacious play in the second half.”
James and Ed Collar both saw freshman Rowan Halloran as a bright spot amid that fight down the stretch.
“Rowan was really aggressive. He played with confidence,” Ed Collar said, “And we’re going to need him to really do that leading us forward into next year.”
Gloversville 17 15 17 15 — 64
Troy 24 18 14 14 — 70
Gloversville scoring: Ja. Collar 9-14-32, Dorman 3-0-9, DiCaterino 5-4-16, Porter 1-0-3, Halloran 1-0-2, Insonia 1-0-2. Troy scoring: Clark 7-5-19, Foust 1-3-5, L. Merritt 7-1-16, S. Merritt 8-3-22, Tucker 1-0-2, Gilmore 2-0-4, Wiltshire 1-0-2. Totals: Gloversville 20-18-64. Troy 27-12-70.