Falcon’s senior Josh Blagrove scored seven-straight points in the final moments of Bishop Ford’s nail-biting 55–52 overtime win over the visiting St. Francis Prep Terriers in non-league boys basketball on Friday night.
Blagrove started his stellar run with a layup in traffic. After a Terriers’ hoop, the 6-foot-5 center buried a 3-pointer from the top of the key, then made an elbow jumper that put Ford up 52–47 with 41 seconds left in the game.
“It’s my senior year,” said Blagrove, who scored a game-high 22 points. “I’m trying to go all the way. We are 5–0 and we are trying to keep it that way.”
Friday’s victory was a bit of a statement game for Blagrove, who is hoping that future wins will inspire the Catholic High School Athletic Association to elevate Bishop Ford from its single-A status to a AA division.
“We feel we should be AA so we are going to play like it,” Blagrove said.
Yet the Falcons may not be ready for AA ball just yet: Bishop Ford nearly gave the game to the under-sized Terriers twice. St. Francis Prep used a 6–0 fourth-quarter run to pull even at 41–41 with 2:53 left in regulation. A Shane Herrity baseline layup with 4.6 seconds left sent the game to overtime tied at 45–45, and Bishop Ford’s missed free throws opened the door to the extra session.
Still, Falcons coach Denis Nolan said the team’s experience has made all the difference this season. Ford starts three seniors in Blagrove, Ishmail Knight, and Dequan Youngblood and has six returning players from last season, when the Falcons finished 9–15. The team has also added sophomore guards Devin Dingle and Dior Dixon — who each scored 10 points against the Terriers — to the talented core of players, Nolan said, explaining that the skilled roster has given Ford what it needs to pull out a winning year.
“We have that mental toughness that we didn’t have last year to say the game’s not over,” Nolan said.Reach reporter Joseph Staszewski at jstaszewsk
©2012 Community News Group
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