“So making those two free throws today was kind of redemption for me.’’
But was he really thinking about a game on Jan. 16?
“It was in the back of my mind,’’ he said. “I just wanted to focus and make sure I followed through.’’
In his four previous trips to the foul line in the final seven minutes, Christopher Compas was just 4-for-8 at the free-throw line, making one and missing one each time.
This time around, with the game on the line, he sank them both, as did teammate Dion Rogers to seal the victory with 1.6 seconds left.
“We made the free throws when we needed them, but we need to be more consistent,’’ said Lowery.
Troubles at the free-throw line was the theme for both teams as Dean College was just 25-of-40 in the contest and coach Rich Fazzi pointed out that his Bulldogs also missed the front end of a 1-and-1 three times.
“That’s basically going 25-of-43 when you add in those,’’ he said. “We shoot about 62 percent on the season and we’re one of the worst in the country.’’
But even with those missed shots at the charity stripe, the Bulldogs rallied from a 10-point deficit (78-68) with 3:30 left in the contest, to take an 82-81 lead on a basket by Jalen Myrie, who finished with 13 points. But Myrie couldn’t complete the three-point play and a turnover on its ensuing possession allowed Essex County to regain the lead for good.
“The biggest thing was the turnover with about 40 seconds left. You just can’t turn it over in that situation,’’ said Fazzi, who told his team at halftime they would need to score 50 points in the second half to beat Essex County. Dean College scored 51 in the final 20 minutes. “We never lost a game scoring more than 81 points this season. We scored 82 tonight, so that’s the first time.