FINAL SCORE: Apprentice School 72, Valley Forge 71
RECORDS: Apprentice School 4-3, Valley Forge 2-6
LOCATION: Valley Forge Gymnasium/Phoenixville, Pa.
IN BRIEF: The Apprentice School overcomes an 18-point deficit to get the comeback victory and stun Valley Forge. Effective free-throw shooting late made the difference as the Patriots hit a 3-pointer as time expired.
ON THE COURT
- Devin Williams started the scoring with a 3-pointer for the Patriots, but Jay Melendez answered with a 3-pointer of his own. Valley Forge would jump ahead 10-3, but back-to-back 3-pointers by William Wilcox pulled the Builders to within a point.
- The Patriots started to pull away with three consecutive 3-pointers. After a Cameron Perry jumper cut the lead to 25-17, Valley Forge used a 10-0 run, capped off by a Jalen Archer 3-pointer, to go ahead 35-17 at the 6:21 mark. Melendez followed his own bucket with a 3-pointer to start a 7-0 Builder run and trim the lead to 37-26, but the Patriots wouldn't allow the Builders to get any closer. An old-fashioned 3-point play and a layup helped Valley Forge take a 44-30 lead into the break.
- The Apprentice School turned up its defense in the second half as the Builders collected 9 steals and a block while forcing 16 Patriot turnovers.
- The Builders chipped away at the Patriot lead with 3-pointers from Melendez and Perry as well as effective shooting at the charity stripe. With Valley Forge up 59-52 with 5:58 to play, Zach Johnson made both of his free throws and Melendez hit a 3-pointer and a jumper to tie things up at 59-59 (3:52).
- The Patriots would pull ahead 68-63, but the Bulders would not go away as Perry and Johnson each made a pair of free throws. With only :48 on the clock, Johnson got a tip-in to fall and gave the Builders their first lead of the game.
- A Patriot turnover meant sending Perry to the line with :23 remaining. The senior guard would miss his first shot but make the second to give the Apprentice School a slim 70-68 advantage. Valley Forge had a layup attempt at the :06 mark, but the missed shot and rebound by Johnson meant he would also see the charity stripe. The junior forward made both for what would be the game-winner as the Patriots came down the floor and connected on a 3-pointer as time expired.
BEHIND THE BOXSCORE
- Melendez led the Builders with a 19-point, 12-rebound double-double. Perry Followed with 15 points, Johnson scored 14 points, and Wilcox came off the bench to contribute 12 points.
- The Builders shot 33.3% (22-of-66) from the field, 41.2% (7-of-17) from beyond the arc, and 95.5% (21-of-22) from the free-throw line.
- The Apprentice School led in rebounds (32-29), committed fewer turnovers (12-24), points off turnovers (24-13), and 2nd chance points (11-5).
- The Builders scored 16 points off the bench.
- The game featured 2 ties and only 1 lead change.
The Builders play again Sunday, December 6th at the University of the District of Columbia. The game is scheduled for a 2 p.m. tipoff.
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