MATTOON -- After the Charleston boys’ basketball team missed a shot from behind the arc with about 10 seconds to go, the Trojans only had one chance left, down by three points. They had to foul Olney as quickly as it could and send the Tigers to the free throw line.
Wyatt Garrett did just that. He fouled an Olney player with 6 seconds left in overtime. But the foul didn’t go as planned as the official called an intentional foul against Garrett. That gave Olney two free throws and the ball back.
Olney made both free throws and Charleston quickly fouled on the inbounds. The damage was done and Charleston coach Blain Mayhall let the official know he wasn’t happy with the intentional foul. He was called for a technical.
The six free throws helped seal the game in the extra period for Olney as the Tigers moved on to the Class 3A regional semifinal with a 53-44 win over Charleston on Monday at Mattoon High School.
Mayhall felt the intentional foul determined the end of the game.
“You cannot call that call in that juncture of the game, you cannot do it,” Mayhall said. “There’s no way he can make another basketball play when he’s trailing the guy and trying to foul him. Nothing else he can do. You cannot call that foul at that point in the game. It’s just not the right call, at all.”
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The late foul calls in overtime overshadowed what was a nice comeback for the Trojans in regulation. Down by seven points with 6:31 left, the Trojans came back and eventually took the lead before Olney forced overtime.
“Olney did a good job of controlling tempo and that’s not how we play,” Mayhall said. “We like to get up and down and they did a good job with that. But we overcame a seven-point deficit in the fourth. They didn’t quit and they haven’t quit on me all year and that’s what I’m most proud of.”
Charleston finished the season with a 10-16 record in Mayhall’s first season leading the program.
Taylor-Lutz led Charleston with 15 points and Boyer added 10.
After being held to 20 points in the first half, Olney scored 17 in the third quarter alone to gain some separation. The Tigers went into the fourth quarter up 37-30.