BROOMFIELD — Drew Hebel is clutch.
Whether it is on the football field or like it was on Tuesday night on the basketball court, Hebel always seems to be the one with the ball in his hand with the game on the line.
With under 10 seconds to play in overtime and the game tied 61-61 with cross-town rival Broomfield, Hebel put back his own miss, drew the foul, and finished the three-point play that would give the Lightning a 64-61 win in the opener over the Eagles.
“Everything went blank at that time, I saw it the rim and I could see it out of the corner of my eye and went up and grabbed it and shot it,” said Hebel, who finished with all 11 of his points in fourth quarter and overtime. “I came down and I heard everyone cheering. I was just so happy that I made that.”
Said Legacy coach Gunnar Johnson: “He’s always been a gamer. That’s just who he is. When a play needs to be made, it doesn’t matter whether it’s football or basketball, he wants the ball in his hand. Guys like that, you know you can trust.”
Legacy trailed by nine points, 55-46, midway through the fourth quarter. The Lightning rallied late with aggressive guard play, especially from senior Nico Ball. The 5-foot-6 point guard hounded the inexperienced Broomfield guards, making three steals down the stretch. It was the third, a pick-pocketing at center court, that led to a layup on the other end and the first lead for the Lightning since the first quarter.
“I remember we had a timeout and I told them it looks to me like they are playing not to lose and we are playing to win,” Johnson said. “That gave us the advantage and that’s what ended up happening. They weren’t looking to score or being as aggressive as they were in the past cause they were playing not to lose and we took advantage of it.”
The Eagles did have a chance in regulation to salvage the win. After Ball missed two free throws with 27.6 seconds left and then got called for a reach on Broomfield’s Payton Holloway 35 feet from the basket with 15.5 to play, the junior could only make 1 of 2 to tie the game.
“We played tight in the last four minutes and they played hard and got after us,” Broomfield coach Terrence Dunn said. “We have a young team and an inexperienced team and we knew it was going to be a tough game, because they wanted to get us.
“Down the stretch we didn’t get over the hump, we got tight, turned the ball over and didn’t take care of business.”
Jacob Royer led Legacy with 12 points and Hebel had 11. Sharp-shooting sophomore reserve Tyler Converse also had 11 points.
Broomfield senior Alec McLain, who transferred from Legacy last year, finished with a game-high 16 points and struggled at times with his new role as the focal point of the Eagles offense.
“He was pressing a lot of the game and he had some nerves early and you could see that three he took in overtime was a little ill-advised,” said Dunn, who also got 11 points from Nate Lehnerz. “He got a little bit out of his game tonight and that is something he has got to learn. He’s going from playing a role last year to being the center of attention and that’s a transition also.”
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Legacy 64, Broomfield 61, OT
At Legacy HS
Foster 0 0-0 0, Williamson 0 1-2 1, McCormick 3 2-2 9, Morris 0 2-4 2, Lehnerz 5 0-0 11, Dohm 2 1-1 6, McLain 6 3-3 16, Davis 0 0-0 0, Holloway 2 1-2 7, Grennan 2 0-0 4, Wristen 2 1-4 5. Totals 22 11-18 61.
Ball 2 2-6 6, Hebel 4 3-5 11, Jensen 1 0-0 2, Johnson 6 1-1 16, Converse 4 0-0 11, D. Royer 0 0-0 0, Salazar 0 0-1 0, J. Royer 5 1-3 12, McDonald 2 2-4 6. Totals 24 9-20 64.
Score by quarters:
Broomfield 17 16 15 8 5– 61
Legacy 14 10 17 15 8– 64
3-point field goals — Broomfield (6): Holloway 2, McCormick, Lehnerz, Dohm, McLain; Legacy (7): Johnson 3, Converse 3, J. Royer. Total fouls — Broomfield 21, Legacy 15. Fouled out — Morris.