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South Stanly men upset North Rowan at home in OT

Dramatic victories for the South Stanly men’s basketball team have happened in the recent history for the Bulls.

Last season, South’s Jaquez Cooke nailed a 3-pointer at the buzzer to win at North Stanly.

Tuesday night, Cooke’s last-second heroics lifted the Bulls to a 50-47 overtime upset victory over North Rowan, handing the first conference loss of the season to the first-place Cavaliers.

Justin Gaddy led South (11-5, 6-2 YVC) with 20 points including 5-of-6 from the foul line in the fourth quarter.

Cooke added 12 points, the final two points coming in the closing seconds of the game.

South led by one point at halftime, 21-20 but the Cavs outscored the Bulls 16-10 in the third period.

Trailing by two in the fourth quarter, Gaddy was fouled shooting a 3-pointer and hit two free throws to tie the game.

With the game tied, the Cavs had two chances to tie the game but Colby Almond came up with a block and North Rowan missed a 10-footer at the buzzer.

In overtime, Almond hit a jump hook putting South up but North Rowan (10-5, 8-1) quickly tied the game then kept possession of the ball and ran time off the clock.

With the game tied at 47 and North Rowan having possession of the ball. Cooke got a steal and went coast-to-coast for an old-fashioned 3-point play with 1.7 seconds left.

“We had a foul to give so we wanted to be aggressive if (the Cavs) drove,” South head coach Sean Whitley said.

“Quez managed to knock the ball away and then just made a great play with the finish.”

The win lifts South into third place, 1.5 games behind North Rowan and one game behind second-place Chatham Central.

“It was a good win for us. We have had some great battles with North Rowan over the past three seasons,” Whitley said.

“We still have a lot of conference games to play but the last two wins kept us in contention (for first place) which is all we can ask for. We will enjoy this one but it’s always about the next game being most important.”

South hosts Gray Stone Friday night.

Sports Editor Charles Curcio can be reached at charles.curcio@stanlynewspress.com, 704-983-1361 or via Twitter (@charles_curcio).

About Charles Curcio

Charles Curcio was the sports editor of the Stanly News & Press from 1999-2001 and has currently served in the same capacity since 2008. He was awarded the NCHSAA Tim Stevens Media Representative of the Year and named CNHI Sports Editor of the Year in 2014. He has also been honored twice by the North Carolina Press Association.

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