Thirty-two minutes of play was not enough on Tuesday night in the Purple Palace to decide a winner between the Buckhorns and Trojans of North Pocono, so the two teams battled it out through an additional two overtime periods of play to determine a victor, and the Buckhorns eventually came out on top even though several times throughout the match-up things looked like it might turn out to be just the opposite.


Thirty-two minutes of play was not enough on Tuesday night in the Purple Palace to decide a winner between the Buckhorns and Trojans of North Pocono, so the two teams battled it out through an additional two overtime periods of play to determine a victor, and the Buckhorns eventually came out on top even though several times throughout the match-up things looked like it might turn out to be just the opposite.

“We just got out there and did what we had to do, we’ve had a few games in the past we haven’t come out there strong, but now we have to get it done,” said Jonathan Shaffer.

The first half of play saw the teams combine for a total of 20 points, at just ten a piece, but in the second half things heated up.

North Pocono took a two nothing lead when they scored the first bucket of the night almost three minutes into the game, but that would be the last points they would muster up in the first eight minutes. Michael Keane collected four points and J.J. Borges hit a three pointer for the Bucks in the first for their seven in the quarter. At the end of one it was a 7-2 lead for the Bucks, and had the makings of very slow game.

The next eight minutes of action saw much of the same with the teams basically reversing the scoring. This time the Trojans recorded eight points and the Bucks just three and a tie score of 10-10 going into half-time.

In the locker rooms, both teams must have used the time to come up with a strategy, and maybe that strategy was that the object of the game is to put the ball actually inside the basket, and that is what the two teams did after intermission.

North Pocono got things rolling by dropping in a three just 40 seconds into the third quarter, and then forcing a Buck’s turnover followed by another bucket for a 15-10 lead before Tim Silsby hit an open Jonathan Shaffer under the bucket who laid it in for the first of his 14 points on the night, and what a night the Western Wayne transplant had for the Buckhorns. Shaffer would end the quarter racking up nine points on his own and was providing a spark for the home team that they drastically needed. At the end of three it was a one point lead for North Pocono with plenty of action to go.

Silsby turned up the pressure on the Trojans early in the fourth and Shaffer went one for two at the line at the 5:12 mark to knot things up at 27. The Trojans then took a slight lead before Richard Palazzi connected to tie it up at 31 and then he knocked down a trey for a ‘Paupack lead of one, 36-35, with just over a minute left in the game, so it seemed anyway.

North Pocono fought back and tied it up after a foul shot and then took the lead after a turnover that looked more like a foul. It was 38-36 Trojans with 50 seconds of regulation showing on the clock and the feeling in the gym was another let down by the home team Bucks, but this would not be the case.

Time was running out for the Bucks. 27.8 seconds left and they had the ball on the Trojan baseline and were looking for a miracle. Palazzi had the ball looking to inbound the pass but it is broken up and knocked out of bounds for a second try. Again Palazzi is on the baseline, he finds Borges open and hits him with a crisp pass, 23 seconds on the clock, Borges looks to and finds Silsby open, 20 seconds on the clock, Silsby gives it back to Palazzi, 17 seconds, Palazzi looks under the bucket and sees an open Shaffer and hits him with a precision, pin-point pass, 11 seconds on the clock. Shaffer takes the pass and it seemed like time stood still as he confidently laid one in off the glass to tie the score at 38-38 with 9.7 in regulation.

North Pocono had plenty of time to get the ball down the court and win it but the Bucks had fouls to give before putting the Trojans at the line and that is what they did. Eventually North Pocono got a clear look at the basket and Borges came out of nowhere and rejected the shot. Time then ran out and off to overtime the two teams would go.

“Hardwork” is what the Bucks always say when they break out of a huddle after a time-out or before tip-off, and that motto was going to be put to the test in the next four minutes of O.T.

North Pocono took over early in the period, jumping out to a five point lead, 43-38 at the 2:07 mark, but Keane took things upon his shoulders and scored four consecutive points to pull within one with 37.8 seconds to go.

With ten seconds the Trojans hit a free throw and were up two, 44-42.

With 2.6 seconds to go , it looked like things were all but over before Palazzi found Keane and he pulled off a turn-around hook shot, fading away from the basket and the buzzer went off. Another overtime was needed.

“I knew we had a little bit of time left and I drove and shot a hook shot. I practice them in practice once in a while, but it paid off that time and it went in. We got real pumped (after that) and we just took it,” said Keane.

This time the Buckhorn Pride took over and they jumped out to a lead after Borges netted one from the foul line and then Shaffer hit two more free throws, and the Trojans would be playing from behind for the rest of the game. With 14.8 seconds Silsby closed the door by hammering home two more foul shots and the exhausted Bucks were victorious — 52-50.

“It feels great, after coming out of the first half with both teams scoring ten points no one thought we were going to score 40 points in the next half, but it was a great win and I’m really happy about it,” said Keane.

“It’s nice, we needed this win, we have Prep next and we almost beat them last time, it was a close game, and I think we can carry this into that game,” said Hyduchak.

Jonathan Shaffer paced the Bucks in scoring recording 14 on the night. Michael Keane added 13 followed by Tim Silsby who chipped in 11. Hyduchak and Palazzi knocked down five a piece and J.J. Borges contributed four points.

Bucks     7    3    14    14    6    8    - 52

Trojans    2    8    15    13    6    6    - 50