Montclair Prep Feels Agony


Ryan Abrahams had already helped Pacific Hills High convert one miracle shot, so a 16-footer to win a game wasn't such a big deal.

After missing a three-point shot seconds earlier, Abrahams made his jumper with 28 seconds left to give the Bruins an 83-82 victory over top-seeded Montclair Prep in triple overtime in a Southern Section V-AA semifinal Tuesday night at St. Genevieve High.

Pacific Hills (23-7), who lost to Montclair Prep 69-56, six weeks ago, will play defending champion Santa Clara for the title Friday at the Bren Center.

Montclair Prep appeared to have the game won in the first overtime. The Mounties (26-4) held a 75-70 lead with 20 seconds left, but Conrad Adamczak made a three-point shot. The Bruins then stole the ball from Montclair Prep guard Carlease Clark and Abrahams was fouled by Kevin Bentley with 1.6 seconds left.

Abrahams missed the first free throw. The second bounced on the rim four times before it was batted out to Charles Pagan. Pagan hit a fadeaway 10-footer as time expired--tying the score at 75-75--to keep the Bruins alive.

"That shot just killed us," Montclair Prep co-coach Greg Patterson said.

The second overtime was sloppy as each team had four turnovers. Two free throws by Brandon Owens for Pacific Hills was the only scoring for most of the four-minute period.

The Mounties finally rallied when Jules Thompson followed a miss by Clark with 3.1 seconds left to force a third overtime.

Although trailing by one point, Montclair Prep looked to have the advantage again in the third overtime when Adamczak, who scored 26 points, fouled out with just over two minutes left.

Montclair Prep took its last lead when Hall followed a miss by Rocky Steryo with 1:10 left.

The Mounties had two good chances in their final possession but Steryo missed a three pointer. And after Pacific Hills knocked the ball out of bounds with 3.4 seconds left , Hall missed a turnaround shot as time expired.

"Everything I've thought about was Montclair Prep, even in the first rounds of the playoffs," said Adamczak.

Steryo scored 22 points, 15 on three-pointers, Thompson scored 17 and Hall 15 to lead Montclair Prep.

Bentley finished with 14 points and 11 rebounds before fouling out at the end of the first overtime.

Owens, whose quickness frustrated the Montclair Prep guards, scored 18 for the Bruins.

Montclair Prep trailed, 40-34, less than a minute into the second half, but quickly rallied with three-pointers by Hall and Steryo.

The shots helped start a 22-9 run that gave Montclair Prep a 56-49 lead.

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