Chesapeake#8217;s late surge foils Redmen upset bid

Published 12:00 am Saturday, June 3, 2006

PEDRO — The Chesapeake Panthers were looking dim. The Rock Hill Redmen were coming to light.

The Panthers may have had a letdown after wrapping up the Ohio Valley Conference championship last Tuesday while the Redmen took a step forward toward what to expect next season.

Whatever was happening Friday night had to be sorted out after the Panthers survived a scare by the Redmen to post a 56-49 win.

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“We already had the league won and we played like it. We didn’t play with any emotion. But it’s a win. At this time of the year, you take it and go on,” Panthers coach Norm Persin said.

Chesapeake, ranked fifth in the Associated Press poll, improved to 16-2 on the season and 9-0 in the OVC. Rock Hill fell to 9-9 and 4-5.

Despite the loss, Rock Hill coach Marty Mills was encouraged by the effort.

“Our kids really stepped up and matured. We showed glimpses of what we can do,” Mills said. “But give credit to (Chesapeake). They had some kids step up and hit some big shots at the end.”

Justin Porter scored seven points in the first quarter as Chesapeake went ahead 15-9. P.J. Rase scored eight points in the second quarter as the Panthers extended their lead to 29-19 at the break.

But K.C. Christian scored 12 points in the third quarter as Rock Hill outscored Chesapeake 21-12 and cut the deficit to 41-40.

“We didn’t back down. We battled all night. K.C. played a real solid game all night. He showed a lot of poise and leadership,” Mills said.

Brent Ransbottom had five points in the quarter for the Panthers.

“We just never got in the flow of things. In the third quarter you have to give them credit. They hit some big shots and got going. To be honest, we did some things we shouldn’t have done,” Persin said.

Rock Hill drew even at 47-47 with 1:42 on the clock. With 1:30 to play, the Redmen lost the ball out-of-bounds and Chesapeake responded with a 3-pointer by Jeffrey Thornburg.

After the Redmen missed two shots inside, P.J. Rase went to the foul line and made 4 of 4 free throws down the stretch to seal the win.

Rase led the Panthers with a game-high 27 points. Porter and Thornburg scored 11 points each. Thornburg had 10 rebounds and Porter seven.

Christian finished with 15 points and six assists. Nathan Davenport had 13 points and 10 rebounds for the Redmen (9-9, 4-5).

“We were able to make on-court adjustments,” Mills said. “Nate played an outstanding game on the boards, Andrew Stumbo played well again, and Mark DePriest hadn’t practiced all week and came in and did a nice job. Wes (Pierson) hit a clutch three and Mike Ison hit some big shots.”


Rock Hill910219=49

CHESAPEAKE (16-2, 9-0): Zach Morrison 0 0 0-0 0, Mike Stapleton 0 0 0-0 0, Caleb McComas 0 0 0-0 0, Tyler Shoemaker 0 0 0-0 0, Justin Porter 5 0 1-3 11, P.J. Rase 8 2 5-5 27, Jeffrey Thornburg 3 1 2-2 11, Brent Ransbottom 3 0 1-1 7. Totals: 19-33



56. Fouls: 10. Fouled out: None. Rebounds: 34 (Thornburg 10, Porter 7). Assists: 11 (Rase 3). Steals: 9 (Thornburg 4). Turnovers: 14.

ROCK HILL (9-9, 4-5): K.C. Christian 4 1 4-5 15, Wes Pierson 0 1 0-0 3, Nathan Davenport 4 1 2-2 13, Matt Matney 3 0 0-0 6, Mark DePriest 1 0 0-0 2, Andrew Stumbo 2 0 0-0 4, Mike Ison 0 2 0-0 6, Aaron Butler 0 0 0-0 0, Nick Howard 0 0 0-0 0. Totals: 19-36



49. Fouls:13. Fouled out: None. Rebounds: 4-17=21 (Davenport 10). Steals: 3 (three with 1): Turnovers: 16. Assists: 14 (Christian 6).