Lourdes battled back from a 14-point second half deficit, tying the game in the final seconds of regulation, but eventually fell to 10th-ranked Cornerstone 76-71 in overtime on Saturday afternoon at Tam-o-Shanter.
The loss was the Gray Wolves' first in its last 11 games at Tam-o-Shanter, and came in a game in which the hosts never led.
Zach Steinmetz (Toledo, Ohio/Saint John's H.S.) recorded his third straight double-double, and his fourth over the last five games, scoring 16 points and grabbing 14 rebounds, while Eric Worthey (Cleveland, Ohio/Cuyahoga Valley Christian H.S.) led Lourdes with 17 points. Jerah'me Williams (Youngstown, Ohio/Campbell H.S.) added a career high 14 points off of the bench for the Gray Wolves.
Ben Lanning led all scorers with 27 points for Cornerstone (15-3, 9-1 WHAC), while Wes Hudson added 19 points. The Golden Eagles shot 48.1% from the floor, and made 18-of-22 (81.8%) free throws on the afternoon to pull out the victory.
Cornerstone scored the game's first eight points before Lourdes fought back to close within one, 11-10, at the 11-minute mark of the opening half. A 9-2 run by the Golden Eagles pushed the lead to nine, 23-14, with 8:20 left in the first half and the visitors would maintain that nine-point advantage, going into halftime with a 30-21 lead.
The Golden Eagles lead grew to as many as 14, 46-32, with 15:40 to play in the game before Lourdes battled back. Eight straight Lourdes points on four consecutive possessions closed the gap to just six within two minutes. Cornerstone had the lead back to 10, 58-48, with under six minutes to play before the Gray Wolves made one more run.
A conventional three-point play by Worthey with 2:11 remaining in regulation cut the Lourdes deficit to one, 64-63. The Gray Wolves got a stop, but were unable to get a shot off before the 35-second clock expired with one minute to play. Butler then created a steal and was fouled with 28.0 seconds remaining and split the pair of free throws, tying the game at 64, the first time Lourdes tied the game the entire contest. Cornerstone's shot with four seconds remaining was off the mark and the game was headed to overtime.
In the extra session Lourdes went the first 2:45 without a field goal, falling behind 70-65. The Golden Eagles lead grew to seven, 74-67, with 1:24 left before four straight points by the Gray Wolves, the last two coming on a tip-in by Steinmetz, closed the gap to three. The Golden Eagles made two more free throws in the final seconds though to account for the final margin.
Lourdes outrebounded the Golden Eagles 34-28, including 14-9 on the offensive end, giving the Gray Wolves a 16-8 advantage in second chance points which allowed them to claw their way back in the second half. The Gray Wolves shot 57.1% in the second 20 minutes after connecting on just 31.6% in the first half, but made just 2-of-8 field goal attempts in overtime.
Lourdes (11-7, 6-4) will wrap up the first half of Wolverine-Hoosier Athletic Conference play on Wednesday evening, facing Lawrence Tech in Southfield, Mich. Tip-off is set for 8 p.m. at the Don Ridler Fieldhouse.