Trailing for most of the night, the Chattanooga Christian School boys’ basketball team mounted a furious comeback at Division II-A East District 2 rival Notre Dame on Friday.
The Chargers rallied to force overtime and eventually posted a 62-48 win, outscoring the Fighting Irish 17-3 in the deciding frame.
“I feel like on defense (the Irish) were getting what they wanted,” CCS coach Eddie Salter said. “We stepped up the intensity on defense and hit some shots we weren’t hitting early. That’s what changed the game for us.”
John Rhodes led the charge in overtime with 11 of his 17 points. Rhodes had struggled with his shot throughout the game but settled in at the stripe to hit clutch shots.
“Our team showed a lot of resilience — they didn’t fold,” Salter said. “We hit some free throws and big shots down the stretch and took advantage of their turnovers.
“John Rhodes stepped up and took over the last two minutes.”
Notre Dame (4-10, 1-2) came out firing on all cylinders behind Derwin Lewis and used a 19-9 advantage in the second quarter to lead 30-24 at halftime.
Lewis lit up the scoreboard with 17 first-half points. He finished with a game-high 25.
The Irish continued to lead until the 4:00 mark of the fourth quarter, when the Chargers (13-3, 6-0) pulled even at 41 thanks, in part, to stellar offensive rebounding.
“We knew that was one of their biggest strengths coming in,” Notre Dame coach Jonathan Adams said. “It was written on our board just to stay even with them in rebounding. We did a great job in the first half, but they really started attacking us on the glass in the second half.”
CCS also found second-half success from the free-throw line, where Notre Dame fell off.
“We went from 10-of-12 in the first half to 3-of-16 in the second,” Adams said. “It’s funny how many times these games come down to the fundamentals.”
The two teams went shot-for-shot in the last four minutes in regulation. The Chargers could not take the win at the buzzer, but a hot-shooting overtime period sealed it.
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