Note: This article originally published in The Reporter and on PaPrepLive.com
HORSHAM >> It wasn’t pretty for Hatboro-Horsham Tuesday night, but when you’re the 24-seed in District 1-6A you’ll take a win any way you can get it.
“Listen. We’ve lost some good games, so I’ll take a sloppy win,” Hatboro-Horsham head coach Ed Enoch said. “Any win is a good win.”
The Hatters outlasted Wissahickon 46-40 in and Suburban One League clash.
“As the tempo of the game went on and you look up and halftime the score is 17-16,” Enoch said. “We’re thinking ‘oh, it’s gonna be a low-30-point game. We just said ‘let’s grind’ and accept the fact that we’re going to make some mistakes but let’s just get back and try to play defense and…score a couple more points than they do. And we did.”
Seniors Jay Davis and Clifton Moore led the Hatters (10-7, 7-4 SOL) with 16 points each. All 16 for Davis came in the second half, where Hatboro scored 30 points as opposed to 16 in the first half.
“I started taking shots I knew I could hit and it was working,” Davis said. “When people talk trash I feed off it so it was just turning me on I guess…I didn’t want them going back on the road going back to school talking about ‘Jay Davis, (he’s) not anything, (he’s) overrated.’ So I just felt like I should do what I do.”
Max Rapaport was the source of offense for Wissahickon (9-8, 6-4), matching Davis and Moore with 16 points. The junior did his work from the outside, hitting three 3s on the night.
“It was one of those odd rotations where nothing seemed to get into a flow or a sync,” Wissahickon head coach Kyle Wilson said. “I don’t know how many games we’ve had this year where we’ve been in the 40s but we just couldn’t get a rhythm going.”
Wissahickon was in foul trouble most of the night, and the free throw line proved to be important in this one. Hatboro was 19-29 from the charity stripe, while the Trojans were just 8-11. Moore shot 12 free throws by himself for the Hatters.
“We were attacking, we just weren’t getting some of those calls getting to the basket and they were getting to the line, it seemed like, every time we turned around they were marching to the line,” Wilson said. “That’s the way it breaks sometimes. You know when you’re in enemy territory you don’t get some of those. I thought we still, even with that, had some chances to win that game but we just didn’t make the plays we needed to.”
The Trojans had two players foul out in the game. There was one point in the second half when the Hatters found themselves in the double-bonus while having committed just three team fouls.
To say the game had a sluggish start would be an understatement. Both teams struggled to get into their respective offenses, resulting in turnovers and missed shots on both sides. Wissahickon jumped out to a 9-2 lead, but a late Moore three ended the first quarter at 9-5.
The second quarter, which Hatboro won 11-8, had a better pace. Moore again led the Hatters, this time going 5-6 from the free throw line for all five of his quarter points. He finished the first half with eight.
Rapaport was the offensive catalyst for Wissahickon, doing most of his damage from beyond the arc. The junior canned a pair of first half threes en route to nine points. He was a key reason why the Trojans led by a point on the half, 17-16.
Hatboro started to show life late in the third quarter, with contributions from Davis and Ryan Black. Davis hit a three and added three free throws to score six points in the quarter. Black hit a late triple to give his team a 27-25 lead heading into the fourth.
The Hatters find themselves on the edge of the playoffs as the 24-seed in the latest District 1-6A rankings. Exactly 24 teams make the playoffs.
“We’re just considering game as a playoff game. We gotta win every game,” Enoch said. “We put ourselves in this position and we gotta get ourselves out.”
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