Boys basketball: No. 3 South Charleston survives against rebuilding Wheeling Park
WHEELING - South Charleston is running out of time to fix its issues, and while they might not seem like much, appearances can be deceiving.
Brandon Knapper scored the first two baskets of overtime and the third-ranked Black Eagles hung on for a 62-58 victory over Wheeling Park (10-12) on Saturday night.
"That's the worst we played defensively in the first half," said South Charleston Coach Vic Herbert, whose team trailed 32-22 at halftime. "I felt like we weren't giving effort. There's no excuses. We just thought we would talk in here and roll over them."
South Charleston's saving grace was 6-foot-2 senior Hunter Moles. He finished with 22 points, while two of the Black Eagles' top players - sophomore A.D. Cunningham and senior Trevond Reese - battled foul trouble and finished with just nine combined points.
The rebuilding Patriots, meanwhile, received 16 points from Ryan Reinbeau and had a chance to win the game in regulation. However, a Reinbeau 3-pointer at the buzzer was off the mark, forcing overtime.
Knapper hit a runner 40 seconds into overtime and added another basket a minute later. The Patriots cut it to two, and South Charleston point guard Ra'Shaud Kincaid hit two free throws with 36.8 remaining for a four-point lead.
The Black Eagles were coming off a 26-point victory over Greenbrier East, but admitted they overlooked the Patriots.
South Charleston is off until Wednesday when the Black Eagles host the winner of Monday's Ripley-Capital game in the Class AAA Region 3 Section 1 tournament.
The Black Eagles are 5-0 against the teams in the section - Ripley, Capital, George Washington and Riverside.
"It's in your head, I would say," Moles said. "When we go to teams and play them, that's their biggest game. We have to play every game like it's the biggest game of the year."