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Allen Park bests Fordson in double OT thriller, advances in districts PHOTO GALLERY

  • Jarett Shinault (3) and the Allen Park Jaguars needed two overtimes Monday night, but came with a 61-59 victory against Forsdson and advanced to play Edsel Ford on Wednesday night in the district semifinals. Photo gallery by Tom Alexander
It was a back-and-forth affair in Lincoln Park on Monday night, where both the Allen Park boys’ basketball team and the Fordson Tractors did everything in their power to keep their respective seasons alive.

In double overtime, it was the Jags who made just one more play than the Tractors when it counted most. Specifically, it was senior Anthony Reviere.

Reviere stole an in-bound pass with 18.2 seconds remaining and then scored on the put back himself. The heroic basket put Allen Park ahead for good, as the Jags came away with a 61-59 victory over Fordson.

The win sends Allen Park into the district semifinals, where Edsel Ford awaits.

“We told the guys this game was going to come down go a few plays and whoever could take advantage was going to come away with it,” said Allen Park Coach Jimmy Victor. “And I’m so proud of our guys. Both teams played their hearts out.”

The Fordson and Allen Park student sections traveled well, and they both maintained a high level of energy from start to finish on Monday.

Both teams seemed to feed off that, as neither squad fell too far behind in the first half.

Fordson took a 14-11 lead into the second quarter behind junior Muhammed Zahr’s eight second-quarter points. Zahr put an exclamation point on a fine quarter by burying a jumper as time ran out.

Chargers Coach Osama Abulhassan praised Zahr for his great all-around effort all season long.

“Muhammed’s stepped up in big moments all year and he’s hit big shots all year. He was very solid,” Abulhassan said. “He made plays on both ends of the floor, made a lot of deflections, and we’re excited to have him back next year.”

The Chargers continued to stay one step ahead of the Jags in the second quarter and did enough to take a 26-22 advantage into halftime.

But in the third quarter, Allen Park took over.

The Jags outscored Fordson 15-5 in the third quarter behind senior Richard Gamble’s tough interior play and six points.

“We really wanted to play composed in the third quarter,” Victor said. “The defense was there, so we wanted to keep that up and we thought if we could limit them to one shot and run the floor we could get some easy buckets. Our composure was good in the third but we lost a bit in the fourth.”

Fordson shook off a tough third quarter and erased a six-point deficit when Zahr hit a huge 3-pointer with 3:27 left in the game to take the lead.

Both teams traded buckets down the stretch and Fordson found themselves up three with 15 seconds left until Richie Slate of Allen Park lifted Allen Park by nailing a clutch 3-pointer, which ultimately sent the game into overtime.

In the extra period, the Tractors outworked Allen Park on the glass, outrebounding them 5-0. They also shot 4-for-5 from the field in the period, but the Jags just hung around.

Slate hit another big trey with 2:08 left in the overtime and the Jags managed to knock down five of their six free throws in the period to keep it close.

Allen Park made a stop with under three seconds left in overtime to keep the game tied, 54-54, and actually got Reviere a good look after a full-court inbound, but he couldn’t hit the 35-foot shot, signaling double overtime.

In the second overtime, Fordson continued to work hard on the glass and looked like they may have punched their ticket to the district semifinals when sophomore Aban Alsulami scored on a put back with under 40 seconds left.

The Tractors even got some help when senior Jarett Shinault slipped on the drive and fumbled the ball out of bounds with 18.2 seconds remaining.

But that’s when Reviere stepped up for his team.

“I told the guys ‘if we get a good trap on the inbound, don’t panic, we can get the steal,’” Victor said. “And then there was Antonio, our team leader in steals, who came away with it.”

Reviere stole the in-bound pass and muscled up a bucket in the paint to put Allen Park up 60-59.

After a tough stop and a big rebound by senior reserve Jake Barann, Fordson was forced to foul Barann with less than two seconds left. Barann hit one of two free throws and then the Chargers were unable to get off a clean pass, much less a clean shot, with 1.4 seconds remaining.

Abulhassan said Fordson’s effort was there during the overtime periods, Allen Park just made one more big play than they did.

“We have to give (Allen Park) credit, they gave up a lead, we went and got it back and then they kept fighting and got it back and it was just a great high school game,” he said.

“We didn’t slow down in the overtime periods, I thought, they just made that big play with the steal late and the ball bounced their way a little bit in the end. I just told my guys to remember this taste in their mouths come next year.”

Fordson, who finishes the season at 14-7, was led in the scoring column by Zahr, who put up 18 points. Senior Abdallah Jaffal added 15, and senior Merwan Ghadieh led the team in boards with eight.

Pacing Allen Park on the night was Gamble, who scored 17 points. Reviere added 12 points and nine boards.

The Jags will now tangle with another pesky, athletic team in Edsel Ford on Wednesday in Lincoln Park.

“They’re another team that’s long and good on both sides of the floor, so we have to play with some composure,” Victor said. “It’s all about team basketball late in the year, so it’s going to be tough. We just have to keep playing together.”

Last Updated: 3/4/2014 3:16:59 PM EST

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