Bishop Shanahan stays perfect with tight win over West Chester Henderson

DOWNINGTOWN >> The Bishop Shanahan boys basketball team dug itself a very deep hole against West Chester Henderson Saturday afternoon, being down as many as 14 points in the first half. But, the undefeated Eagles showed a ton of grit and determination. And when Cooper Jordan’s follow-up basket with 5.6 seconds to go dropped in, the Eagles climbed all the way out of the hole and defeated the Warriors, 63-60 in Ches-Mont League National Division action.

“I was trying to crash the basket and I knew that it was the final seconds,” Jordan said. “We missed the shot but I got through to the basket and put the ball in. We got behind early but we have a lot of faith in each other to come back.”

West Chester Henderson (1-3 Ches-Mont National, 1-4 overall) sprung out to an 18-8 lead after one quarter and held a 32-24 edge at halftime. The strong start was keyed by Eddie Smink, who led the Warriors with 12 points, and solid play from Ryan Bell, who chipped in 10 points. For the Eagles, Zane Domsohn, who scored 15 points for the game, had 11 in the opening half to keep the Eagles close.

But, Shanahan turned up the defensive pressure in the second half and the Warriors turned the ball over eight times in the second half. Will O’Loughlin, who had a very big game, led the Eagles (4-0, 5-0) with 16 points to go along with 10 rebounds. O’Loughlin’s follow late in the third quarter gave Bishop Shanahan its first lead at 44-43.

Tommy Dougherty buried a long three to make it a 49-47 Eagles lead early in the fourth quarter. But, the usual Bishop Shanahan hot shooting from the outside was not there Saturday, and the Eagles continued to go down low to O’Loughlin, who was battling fiercely with the Warriors’ big men under the boards. O’Loughlin had eight points in the fourth quarter for Bishop Shanahan.

When O’Loughlin scored on a nice feed from Jordan down low, it gave the Eagles a 59-57 lead with 1:23 to play in the fourth quarter. After a West Chester Henderson timeout, the Warriors patiently moved the ball around the floor and got the shot they wanted. The Warriors found Dylan Sells alone in the left corner and Sells delivered a three to give the Warriors a 60-59 lead with 18 seconds to play.

After an Eagles timeout, the ball went up from Ryan Riotto and it just rimmed out, but Jordan was the man in the moment and his follow gave Bishop Shanahan a 61-60 advantage with 5.6 seconds to play. Henderson moved the ball swiftly up the floor, but turned the ball over and O’Loughlin was fouled with one second to play and he hit both free throws to give Bishop Shanahan a very tough 63-60 Ches-Mont National Division win.

“It was really physical today under the basket,” O’Loughlin said. “And this was our third straight gut-wrenching game in a row. We got behind early, but we all trust each other and we have each other’s back and that is what happened when we got down big early.”

Bishop Shanahan heads to play West Chester Rustin Monday night as the only undefeated team left in the Ches-Mont League, and Eagles coach John Dougherty talked about his team and its resilience.

“We have a bunch of guys that contribute in many different ways,” Dougherty said. “If they are not scoring, they are playing good defense or hustling after loose balls. it is a fun group to be around.”

Bishop Shanahan 63, WC Henderson 60

WC HENDERSON (60): Bell 2 5-6 10, Fay 3 1-6 7, Domenic 3 2-2 7, Sirichio 1 0-0 3, Smink 3 5-5 12, Kirby 0 7-9 7, Jarden 3 1-2 8, Sells 1 0-0 3. Totals 16 21-30 60.

BISHOP SHANAHAN (63): Riotto 1 2-3 4, Domsohn 7 0-1 15, Smyth 2 3-4 8, O’Loughlin 6 4-4 16, Jordan 5 0-0 10, Dougherty 1 0-0 3, DeAngelis 2 0-0 6, Kapcynski 0 0-0 0. Totals 24 9-11 63.

WC Henderson 18 14 13 15 – 60

Bishop Shanahan 8 16 20 19 – 63

3-point goals: Domenic 2, Sirichio, Smink, Sells, Domsohn, Smyth, Dougherty, Deagelis 2.

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