Seton comes alive to beat Placid

Justin Novick of Lake Placid and Neil Yang of Seton Catholic stretch for a rebound during the second half of Friday’s game. (Enterprise photo — Lou Reuter)

LAKE PLACID — In a game that started out with two rusty teams coming off a long holiday break, Seton Catholic got the better of Lake Placid in the second half on the way to a 63-60 non-league boys basketball victory Friday over the Blue Bombers.

Playing at home, Lake Placid led by as much as 12 points in the opening half before Seton Catholic started to come alive on offense after intermission. And at the same time they began to find their scoring touch, the Knights turned up the heat defensively to improve to 6-2 overall. The Blue Bombers dropped to 6-3 with the loss.

Lake Placid foreign exchange student Jearanut “Pao” Tantitanomwong, a junior from Thailand, led all scorers in the game with 43 points, which included seven baskets from beyond the three-point arc.

But in the end, Neil Yang and Thomas Murray proved to be a deadly combination for the Knights, and combined for 48 points. Yang led the way with a team-high 27 points, Murray tossed in 21 and Foster Ovios added 10 more in the victory.

The Blue Bombers led 15-11 at the end of the first quarter and were on top 26-18 at halftime. Seton Catholic, however, began to turn the tide with a four-point run during the final minute of the second quarter. Yang provided the scoring, knocking down a pair of free throws with 53 seconds left on the clock, and followed with a fast-break layup just before the buzzer that cut the Knights’ deficit to eight points.

Jearanut Tantitanomwong puts up a shot for Lake Placid while Thomas Murray defends for Seton Catholic. Also pictured for the Knights is Neil Yang and Aidan Masten (12). (Enterprise photo — Lou Reuter)

Pao opened the third quarter by knocking down a three-pointer to put Lake Placid back on top by double digits, but the advantage turned out to be short lived. Trailing 29-18, Seton strung together a 13-2 run to tie the contest at 31-31 with 3:50 remaining in the third quarter. Lake Placid answered with the next four points, and that margin held up as the Blue Bombers headed into the final period on top 42-38.

The fourth quarter was a nail-biter that saw the Knights rally and eventually build up a 58-51 lead with 2:50 left on the clock, which was their biggest advantage of the game. The Blue Bombers did, however, have their chances to either tie or win the game down the stretch but couldn’t get the job done.

Lake Placid whittled its deficit down to 62-60 when Pao hit a pair of foul shots with 19.8 seconds remaining, and the door opened again when Yang missed two free throws with 12.4 seconds left.

Jake Coursen grabbed the rebound, Lake Placid moved the ball to half court and then called a timeout. But an encouraging moment became a wasted opportunity for the Blue Bombers, who couldn’t inbound the ball after the stoppage and gave the ball back to the Knights after a five-second violation.

Lake Placid did have one final chance, and that came with 8.5 seconds left when Matthew Ladieu sank his first of two free throws to give the Knights a 63-60 edge, but he missed the second. Again the Blue Bombers hauled down the rebound, but a long three-point attempt by Coursen fell well short of the mark.

Jacob Novick of the Blue Bombers grabs a loose ball in front of Neil Yang of the Knights. (Enterprise photo — Lou Reuter)

Longtime Seton Catholic head coach Larry Converse said he was distressed by his team’s shooting woes early on, but said he was pleased with the way the Knights defended down the stretch.

Despite the loss, Lake Placid head coach Brian VanNostrand was happy with the effort turned in by his players, whose chances were further hampered when Pao got into foul trouble after being whistled with his fourth just four seconds into the final quarter.

“I can’t remember the last time a Lake Placid team has been within three points of a Seton Catholic team at the end of the game,” VanNostrand said. “I’m really proud of the team.”

The Blue Bombers will be at home again for their next game, hosting Johnsburg on Tuesday.

Lake Placid’s Matt Brandes sends a bounce pass under his team’s basket past Matthew Ladieu of the Knights in the second half. (Enterprise photo — Lou Reuter)

Seton Catholic 63, Lake Placid 60

Knights 11 7 20 25 — 63

Blue Bombers 15 11 16 18 — 60

Seton Catholic (63)

Yang 10-3-27, Ladieu 0-3-3, Coupal 0-0-0, Murray 7-4-21, Masten 0-0-0, Osborne 0-2-2, Ovios 402-10. Totals: 23-14-63.

Lake Placid (60)

Izzo 2-0-6, Brandes 0-0-0, Pao 15-6-43, Perry 0-0-0, White 0-0-0, Ja. Novick 1-3-5, Ju. Novick 0-0-0, Coursen 3-0-6, Williams 0-0-0. Totals: 21-9-60.

Three-point goals: SC (7), Yang 4, Murray 3. LP (9), Izzo 2, Pao 7.