Crusaders beat Goldbacks 67-66

Rob Vacco sends game into overtime; Chance Green wins it at the buzzer

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  • Photos by William Dimmit Rob Vacco (#4) sent the game into overtime with this drive down the lane with two seconds left on the clock.

  • Chance Green (#3) hits this buzzer-beater three-point shot to give the Crusaders the victory.

  • The Crusaders mob Chance Green after he hit the game winning shot.

  • The winning smile: Chance Green’s 23-point effort helped the Crusaders to a key

CENTRAL VALLEY — On Wednesday, Jan. 10, the Monroe-Woodbury Crusaders hosted the Goldbacks of Newburgh in an OCIAA Division 1 match up.

Both teams entered the game in desperate need of victories to keep their playoff hopes alive.

The Crusaders jumped out to 13-9 first quarter lead with John McCormick grabbing several key rebounds and scoring four points.

The Goldbacks stormed back in the second quarter and tied the score at 13 but the Crusaders weathered the surge and went into the half with a 25-21 lead.

The Goldbacks came out after the half and with three minutes left in the third quarter took the lead for the first time.

At that point it began to feel like the Crusaders' second half collapse against Kingston the week before. The Crusaders had reached a turning point in the game and perhaps in their season.

So the Crusaders took the floor down by one as they started the fourth quarter, which turned out to be one of the most exciting periods in recent Crusader history.

The Goldbacks seemed to put the Crusaders away time and again but the Crusaders kept battling back with the shooting of Chance Green, who scored nine points in the quarter.

With under two minutes to go in the game the Goldbacks were up by five. The Crusaders' final run was capped off by Rob Vacco’s drive down the lane for two points to tie the score at 59 and to send the game to overtime.

The four-minute overtime period had the same intensity as the end of regulation as the Goldbacks built a small lead but Green kept the Crusaders in the game scoring eight points to keep the Crusaders hopes alive.

Finally, the Crusaders were down by two with two seconds left, Brandon Adams was taking the ball in for the Crusaders under their basket, he found Green in the corner who hit a three-point shot with a Goldback defender in his face to give the Crusaders the victory.

The Crusader fans and team stormed the court and mobbed Green and celebrated the moment and the victory.

The 67-66 victory brings their season record to 5-6 their next game will at Burke Catholic on Tuesday at 6:30 p.m.

- William Dimmit

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