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HIGH SCHOOL BASKETBALL : Calvin’s Clutch Three-Pointers Carry Morse

Whooooosh. Three points.

Whooooosh again. Three more.

Who was this guy?

No. 14?

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“I don’t even know who that kid was,” Kearny Coach Bill Peterson said. “What was his name?”

Russ Calvin. Morse’s designated shooter.

Calvin, a part-time player, hit two three-pointers in the final minute to give fourth-ranked Morse a 63-62 victory over second-ranked Kearny on Tuesday at Morse.

Calvin’s smooth shots were something to watch. One came with 56 seconds to play, the other with 33 seconds to play. He took both passes in the corner, inches behind the three-point line, spun and let the ball fly. Neither even grazed the iron.

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“Really, his role on the team is to hit the outside shot,” Morse Coach Ron Davis said. “He really came through for us today.”

Kearny (12-3) did have one last chance. Morse led, 63-60, and the Komets brought the ball up the court as the final seconds ticked down. Gary Taylor took a shot that missed from three-point range. He grabbed his own rebound and then hit a two-pointer off the glass with five seconds to play.

Morse took the ball and let the clock run out.

“We had enough time to kick it out for another (three-pointer),” Peterson said. “But he’s a 10th-grader. That’s going to happen.”

As for Calvin, Morse certainly has more high-profile players. Darnell Cherry, for instance, stands at 6-9. He led Morse with 18 points. And Jaamar Lavender, who scored 13, gets everybody the ball.

Kearny’s Mike Oviedo frequented the free-throw line and pounded inside for a team-high 18.

But this was Calvin’s afternoon. He finished with 13 points, his best performance of the season. “Nobody knows who he is,” Cherry said. “But he’ll creep up on you.”

Calvin seemed surprised everybody wanted to talk to him after the game. He isn’t used to this. He also isn’t one for wordy answers.

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Asked if he had ever hit two in a row like that, he said: “Two against Lincoln.”

As important?

“Naw.”

Those the biggest you’ve ever made?

“Yeah.”

The victory was a big one for the Tigers, who were drubbed by Lincoln, 78-56, Friday night. They wanted momentum heading into Friday’s City Eastern League opener against Serra. A loss to Kearny, Davis said, would have punctured a bit of his team’s spirit.

“It really would have been tough,” Davis said. “We’d have probably had to lose three league games to regroup.”


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