But then Jake Curran's team came to life. And in a big way. With junior forward Kevin Diffley leading the charge, Molloy sliced away at the Bayhawks' lead until Diffley's two free throws with 24.2 seconds left tied the game and forced overtime.
Molloy had the momentum - at least one would think - at the start of the extra session. But St. Dominic's rattled off six straight points en route to a 70-66 win.
"We felt we were going to win," said Molloy senior Thomas Harison, who had six points. "Everything was on our side, the momentum was there. I guess it just wasn't our time."
Tim Doyle led the way for St. Dominic's (1-0). The 6-foot-6 junior was all over the court, scoring a game-high 23 points along with 10 rebounds, nine assists and four steals for the Bayhawks. And it was a steal, a pair of free throws and a drawn charge in the final 10 seconds of overtime that iced the game.
"I don't possess any great skills," Doyle said. "I just want to win and we did that against a city team no one expected us to beat."
Diffley led Molloy (3-2) with 18 points, Hofstra-bound Wendell Gibson added 15, but just four in the second half. Senior John Sikiric also had 14 for the Stanners.
"We just weren't offensively efficent," said Molloy head coach Jack Curran. "We came down and couldn't score. We're still searching for the right combinaiton."
The legendary head coach may have found that combination down the stretch of the second half. Down by 16 with 4:45 left in the fourth quarter, Gibson scored his first two points of the second half on a putback. After the 6-foot-7 bruiser opened the game by scoring five straight points, St. Dominic's decided to double Gibson whenever he got the ball in the low post. With the Stanners missing their outside shots, the plan worked perfectly.
But late in the game, Molloy wasn't missing it's shots. Harrison's baseline floater cut the Bayhawks lead to 56-45 with 3:05 to play. Following Sikiric's right wing three, Diffley knocked down a trey to cut St. Dominic's lead in half, 58-51 with 1:43 left.
After St. Dominic senior guard Greg Bosl hit the front end of a one-and-one bonus, Gibson scored on another putback. Anthony Lopiano added two free throws to extend the Bayhawks' lead to 61-53 with 1:02 left.
John Maser added a three of his own from the left baseline and, after Mike Grinnon missed a free throw, Diffley lept in the air to catch a pass over a Bayhawk defender, turned and nailed a trifecta from the right wing to make it a two-point game, 61-59, with 39 seconds left.
"When we were up by 16 we got lazy, started looking at the scoreboard and relaxing," Doyle said."And it looked like they hit every three they took."
Molloy pressed and junior Jamaal Wagner got the steal. The ball got into the hands of Diffley, who was crushed in the lane. The 6-foot-6 junior forward calmly drained both free throws to tie the game at 61 with 24.2 seconds remaining.
With everything seemingly going the Stanners' way, St. Dominic's promptly took the opening tip of overtime and charged down the floor, as 6-foot-6 junior forward Brian Houlihan sent down what Doyle said was "the first dunk in St. Dominic's in about four years."
Molloy momentarily went cold in overtime, missing its first five shots. Doyle hit Lopiano on a gorgeous backdoor cut and then Doyle was left wide open on the left blocks as the Bayhawks jumped ahead, 67-61.
"We had one defensive lapse when we left Doyle open under the basket," Curran said. "And on the basket off the tip, our kid just couldn't grab it."
The Stanners again made a game of it, as a three by Wagner and a driving layup by Maser in the lane cut the Bayhawks' lead to 67-66 with 1:10 left.
Molloy even had a chance to win the game, but Gibson missed an open shot from the right blocks and Doyle stole Wagner's attempted pass inside to Gibson.
The Stanners held a three-point lead, 15-12, in the first quarter, but St. Dominic's went on a 22-4 run, capped by Grinnon's three-pointer to take a 34-19 lead with 4:04 left in the second quarter. The Bayhawks went into the break ahead 36-29. An 11-2 third quarter run put St. Dominic's ahead, 52-37, with 6:26 left and, less than two minutes later, the Bayhawks had its largest lead of the game, 56-40.
Holy Cross 69, Cardinal Hayes 66. The Knights were led by senior forward Joe Marino's 21 points, while senior guard Chris Fileti added 17 and Mike Howell had 14. Cross improved to 3-0 on the year with the win. Cross was up by as much as 12 in the fourth, but managed to hold on for the win.
Cathedral Prep 80, St. Helena 34. The Crusaders remained perfect on the year with Friday's drubbing of St. Helena's. Tom Czaplinski scored 20 in the win for Cathedral, now 4-0 overall and 2-0 in league play.
Holy Cross 74, St. Anthony's 55. After beating Stepinac 94-47 in their opener, the Knights trounced the Friars last Tuesday. Marino led with 18, Fileti had 16 and Miguel Gonzalez added 12 for Cross.
Archbishop Molloy 72, Holy Trinity 29. Wendell Gibson led the Stanners to this blowout win with 16 points and 14 rebounds. Molloy improved to 4-1.
Regis 47, St. John's Prep 35. The rebuilding red Storm dropped this game last Wednesday, as Regis' Steve Quinn and Pete Fagliano combined for 33 points.
©2000 Community News Group
By submitting this comment, you agree to the following terms:
You agree that you, and not TimesLedger.com or its affiliates, are fully responsible for the content that you post. You agree not to post any abusive, obscene, vulgar, slanderous, hateful, threatening or sexually-oriented material or any material that may violate applicable law; doing so may lead to the removal of your post and to your being permanently banned from posting to the site. You grant to TimesLedger.com the royalty-free, irrevocable, perpetual and fully sublicensable license to use, reproduce, modify, adapt, publish, translate, create derivative works from, distribute, perform and display such content in whole or in part world-wide and to incorporate it in other works in any form, media or technology now known or later developed.