Meadowview advances to Final Four

Published 11:56 pm Friday, February 13, 2009

MONTGOMERY — Meadowview caught fire with five fourth quarter 3-pointers to overcome foul trouble and erase a 5-point deficit and put East Memorial Christian out of the postseason in a 64-61 win in the AISA Class AA Elite Eight on Friday.

“It has been a long time since a basketball team from Meadowview went to the Final Four,” said Meadowview coach Robby Redd. “It was a heck of a game. I’ve been confident all week. I believe we’re coming around.”

After a foul-prone third quarter, in which Meadowview outfouled EMCA 9-0 — allowing nine Wildcat points from the free throw line — the Trojans entered the fourth quarter like a team on a mission.

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Trailing 42-37, Justin Freine knocked down a 3-pointer to make it 42-40, and Daniel Blackmon followed with another trey to give the Trojans their first lead since the 2:50 mark of the first period.

A Zac Hornyak layup put the Wildcats back ahead 44-43, but Meadowview’s daggers kept falling. Adam Brown popped two 3-pointers and Freine hit one more to put Meadowview up 52-46 with 5:25 left in the contest.

“We were surprised by their 3-point shooting,” said East Memorial coach Ken Moats. “Ours were not falling and theirs were. That was the difference.”

Redd was taken aback by the performance as well.

“We got hot and it felt good,” said Redd. “We haven’t done that in a while.”

But, much to Redd’s disgust, as the clock dwindled under three minutes, the Trojans were not content to salt the game away by milking the clock and hitting free throws. They continued to race the ball down the court at every opportunity.

“We made a bunch of mistakes,” said Redd. “They get excited and to make it a 10-point lead, and aren’t content to win by six or seven.”

The Wildcats took advantage as Hornyak hit a 3-pointer to make it 61-60 with 34 seconds left. But Meadowview slowed the pace from there, and free throws by Brown and Judson Mott secured the win.

Freine led the Trojans (15-7) with 21 points. J.R. Lowe added 13, Blackmon finished with 11 and Brown chipped in 10.

Hornyak led the Wildcats with 17 points. Derrick Hale added 11 and Dakota Davis finished with 10.