2017-01-03 / Front Page

Ice cold Cooper catapults Clovers to win with time expired free throws

by Brent Ranard
for the Spencer Evening World


Junior Jalen Moore shoots for two of his team high 31 points against Marshall. He connected on five three pointers in the game. (Photo by Brent Ranard) Junior Jalen Moore shoots for two of his team high 31 points against Marshall. He connected on five three pointers in the game. (Photo by Brent Ranard) For the entire game Wednesday afternoon, Marshall seemed to have Cloverdale’s number. They had led from the start of the game. They were up 17-15 at the end of the first quarter and stretched the lead to 41-30 at halftime.

They enjoyed their largest lead of the night at 14 points at the end of the third quarter 63-39. It appeared the Lions would coast into the consolidation championship game. They did not count on the fight that the Clovers would show in the fourth quarter.

Cloverdale tied the game 74-74 as Jalen Moore connected on his fifth three-pointer of the night with 1:00 to play in the game. The Clovers had the ball with 29 seconds to play and the score still tied. They ran the clock down to 15 seconds and Coach Pat Rady called a timeout to set up a play.


The Cloverdale bench congratulates team mate Cooper Neese after he sinks a free throw with no time on the clock to give the Clovers the 75-74 victory over Marshall. (Photo by Brent Ranard) The Cloverdale bench congratulates team mate Cooper Neese after he sinks a free throw with no time on the clock to give the Clovers the 75-74 victory over Marshall. (Photo by Brent Ranard) They tried to get the ball to Cooper Neese, but the Lions were able to steal the ball and head the other way. The whistle blew, and Marshall was called for a double dribble and only one second was left on the clock.

Cloverdale once again called a timeout and set up a double screen for Neese. He caught the ball and shot in the same motion but the ball was off the mark. The whistle blew as Neese hit the floor and the Lions were called for a foul.

With no time on the clock, Neese headed to the line shooting three shots and only needed one to seal the victory. To that point in the tourney, he had hit 32 straight free throws without missing one. He nailed the first attempt and the Cloverdale fans proceeded to celebrate the 75-74 come from behind victory.

Moore finished with a team-high 31 points and Neese finished with 28. This moves Neese into third place in the top scores in Wabash Valley Classic history. The Indiana All-Star candidate also set the record for the most free throws made in a tournament, 29 was the previous record.

Jake Wilkes added seven points for the Clovers while Jake Winders, Seth Pfaff, and Parker Watts had three apiece.

Marshall was led by their outstanding senior Josiah Wallace who scored a game-high 36 points in an impressive performance. Senior Spencer Shaffer had 17 points while 6’7” freshman Jesse Burdick added 10.

“I was so proud of our guys today, and they played with a lot of heart,” Rady commented after the game. “To come back on a quality team like Marshall says a lot about their character.”

“The Wallace kid is a really good player, and we will probably not face a tougher player the rest of the season,” he added. “We have wondered what would happen if Cooper and Jalen were really on at the same time. We saw that in a stretch in the fourth quarter, and we can score points in a hurry.”

Cloverdale will face Robinson Illinois in the consolation bracket championship. Robinson was defeated by Terre Haute North in the opening round and defeated Owen Valley and Riverton Parke in the second and third rounds.

Return to top

Click here for digital edition
2017-01-03 digital edition