MADISON — With the game tied at 52-52 in the closing minute of the game, Madison was looking for a final shot. When the Cubs took the shot with about eight seconds left, Tanner McFall got the ball for Columbus East.
That was enough time for McFall, who checked to see how much time was left on the clock, to start driving coast to coast and drain the layup at the buzzer to send East home happy with a 54-52 Hoosier Hills Conference boys’ basketball victory.
“Jonathan (Foster) did a great job making his guy take a contested shot and get a stop,” McFall said. “Once we got the rebound, we wanted to take it far as we can. Coach (Brent Chitty) always says to take it to the basket until somebody stops you, and luckily, no one did.”
The Olympians offense mostly ran through Chaz Painter inside most of the night. He finished with a game high 18 points.
“(The second half) definitely fueled us because not many shots were falling,” Painter said. “Everyone starting coming because they were coming in on me, and that opened up some shots for the other guys.”
Chitty admired his team’s effort in the second half after a rough start to the game.
“Give Madison credit — they came out and played extremely well. They hit their shots, and their effort was better than ours in the first half,” Chitty said. “I thought our kids stepped up in the second half. When we had to get a stop, we got a stop. When we had to get a score, we got a score. I was very pleased to come out on the road and get a win.”
McFall finished with 11 points and Thomas Myers added 10 for East (9-12, 3-3).
The Olympians had an early 2-0 lead, but it quickly vanished. They could not find the basket offensively and the Cubs (5-15, 0-7) broke through the Olympians defense, going on a 13-2 run to lead 16-11 after the first quarter.
East came back in the second quarter to trail only 24-23, but Madison scored the final four points of the first half to lead 28-23.
The Olympians came out with a lot of energy to start the second half. They scored the first six points to lead 29-28. The Cubs came back to retake the lead at 34-31, but East rallied for a 38-34 heading into the fourth quarter.
Once Madison tied the game at 40-40, the teams traded points until the closing seconds, setting up McFall’s game winner.