BOYS HOOPS: Buzzkill: Dragons don’t get last-second shot to fall in loss to Girard

The final seconds of Monday’s game between Warren and Girard may have given fans a flashback of the game against McDowell just weeks ago.

The Dragons couldn’t hit a miraculous game-winner this time in a 52-51 Region 6 loss.

After Austin Jerman’s 3-pointer gave Warren a 51-50 lead late in the fourth quarter, Girard’s Brian McNally drew a foul – after Warren’s Mark Davis blocked a shot but Girard regained possession – and he sunk both free throws to put the Yellow Jackets ahead with just three seconds on the clock. Matt Sandberg’s last-second shot bounced off the front of the rim as Girard (8-1 overall, 2-0 in region) stormed the court in victory.

The Yellow Jackets were 6-of-6 from the line in the final minute after shooting just 4-of-14 prior.

“We weren’t aggressive enough on offense,” said Warren coach Jeff Berdine, whose Dragons have lost twice by one point, and are 6-2 overall. “Our shot selection and decision making was poor tonight. We need to get better shots and take care of the ball.”

The Dragons turned the ball over 19 times in the loss.

“It’s good experience playing in games like this early in the year, but obviously you want to win your region games at home,” said Berdine.

With the loss, the Dragons fall to 1-1 in region play.

Warren was led offensively by Sandberg, who finished with a game-high 24 points. Jerman added nine points to go along with five assists and six rebounds, while Tanner Stanz scored nine of his own, all from beyond the arc.

The Yellow Jackets were paced by Joe Swanson, who finished with 21 markers.

“Swanson was huge for them,” said Berdine. “Every time they needed it, he made a big shot.”

Swanson scored 17 of his 21 in the second half.

The Dragons will face another tough test on Thursday, when they travel to Edinboro to take on General McLane (6-2, 1-0) in another region match-up.

Warren won the junior varsity game, 42-30. Ryan Gustafson led the way with 17 points and Austin Schwanke added 14 for the Dragons.

GIRARD (52): Bonnett 3 3-9 10, Cruz 2 0-0 4, McNally 1 2-4 4, Dunn 4 0-1 8, Swanson 8 3-3 21, McCall 1 2-3 4, Totals 19 10-20 52.

WARREN (51): Matt Sandberg 9 2-3 24, Collin Fantaskey 1 0-0 2, Mark Davis 2 1-2 5, Austin Jerman 4 0-0 9, Tanner Stanz 3 0-0 9, Jack Daley 0 0-0 0, Jacoby Passmore 1 0-0 2, Phil Hachula 0 0-0 0, Totals 20 3-5 51.

Girard 14 9 12 17 – 52

Warren 15 11 15 10 – 51

3-pointers: G – Bonnett 2, Swanson 2; W – Sandberg 4, Jerman, Stanz 3.

Junior varsity game

GIRARD (30): Little 1 0-0 2, Dinger 3 0-0 8, Harbaugh 2 0-0 5, Orr 4 0-0 8, D.Williams 1 0-0 3, Koerber 2 0-0 4, Totals 13 0-0 30.

WARREN (42): Nate Sandberg 0 0-0 0, Austin Schwanke 5 1-3 14, Ryan Gustafson 8 0-0 17, John White 0 0-0 0, Scott Vasilisin 1 0-0 3, Kyle Kulka 0 0-0 0, Matt Hultquist 2 0-0 4, Jason Tipton 0 0-0 0, Justin Wright 2 0-0 4, Sam Lindquist 0 0-2 0, Totals 18 1-5 42.

Girard 10 2 13 5 – 30

Warren 15 3 13 11 – 42

3-pointers: G – Dinger 2, Harbaugh, Williams; W – Schwanke 3, Gustafson, Vasilisin.