March 24, 2014
CHARLESTON, W.Va. (AP) — Chase Harler scored seven of his 30 points in the second overtime to lift Wheeling Central to a 64-55 victory over Charleston Catholic for the Class A championship Saturday.
Top-seeded Wheeling Central (25-3) came from 12 points down to force overtime and relied on Harler to earn its first title since 2009 and the 11th in school history.
Third-seeded Charleston Catholic (21-7) couldn’t secure its second title in three years and a final one for retiring coach Bill McClanahan.
It marked the first Class A championship game to go to overtime since Wheeling Central beat Tucker County in 2004. It’s the fifth title for Mel Stephens as Wheeling Central’s head coach.
Nick George led Charleston Catholic with 20 points and Garret McCarty added 17.
Wheeling Central’s David Park had 10 points and 14 rebounds.
Wheeling Central ran off nine of the first 11 points in the second overtime. Harley opened the scoring in the second overtime with a three-point play and Wheeling Central extended the lead to as many as 10.
The Maroon Knights sealed the win by making seven free throws in the final two minutes.
A George 3-pointer was Charleston Catholic’s only field goal in the second overtime. The Irish shot 26 percent from the floor for the game.
Wheeling Central didn’t take its first lead until the fourth quarter when Harler’s 3-pointer put the Maroon Knights ahead 43-42 with 3 minutes left. McCarty forced the first overtime with a pair of free throws with 55 seconds left in regulation.
Harler had the chance to win it in regulation but his 3-pointer from the top of the key hit off the rim to force overtime.
Neither team got off many shots in the first overtime, scoring four points apiece with George’s layup with 56 seconds left forcing the second overtime.
Charleston Catholic scored the game’s first seven points, led by as many as 12 early in the second quarter and took a 27-22 edge into the second half.