BY DENNIS CHASE
---- — MAPLE CITY — For Brandon Schaub, it was a night for redemption.
Schaub hit the second of his two free throws with 7.5 seconds remaining Thursday to lift Frankfort to a key 47-46 Northwest Conference win at Glen Lake.
“Same thing happened here last year,” Schaub said. “It was a close game and I went to the same free throw line (in the closing seconds) and missed them both. Same exact situation — and we ended up losing (53-51).”
Glen Lake’s Carter Lee had a chance to win it, but misfired on a 3-point attempt.
“We drew it (play) up for him,” Lakers coach Todd Hazelton said. “We told (Carter) if you can drive to the basket do that. We knew they didn’t want to foul. They were only up one. But he had a good look and he had been shooting it pretty well.
“That was a good high school game. Great intensity.”
With the win, Frankfort moved to 3-0 in the Northwest, the same mark as Suttons Bay. Glen Lake fell to 3-1.
Thursday’s showdown was close throughout. Neither team could gain separation. The biggest lead came with just over two minutes to play when Frankfort’s Mason Loney scored down low to give the Panthers a 46-40 lead. That lead lasted one minute. A Lee 3-pointer tied it at 46 with 1:03 remaining.
The Lakers, 5-3 overall, quickly forced a turnover following Lee’s triple and Logan LaCross drew a shooting foul under the basket with 58.2 seconds left.
LaCross, though, missed both free throws, the Panthers rebounded and played for the last shot. After calling a time out with 10 seconds left, Frankfort tried a lob to David Loney off the inbounds. It was batted away — right to Scahub, who was fouled as he took it to the basket.
Schaub, who had missed an earlier free throw in the fourth quarter, failed to convert on his first attempt. Would the same fate strike twice at Glen Lake?
“I had to calm down, take a couple of deep breaths,” Schaub said before his second attempt. “I had to make sure to use my legs, follow through, and then just hope it goes in.”
“Thank God,” Schaub said, smiling afterwards.
“Our foul shooting has been a problem and it almost cost us tonight,” Panthers coach Reggie Manville said. “But he’s (Schaub) a senior. He’s been on the varsity three years. You would hope that he could hit those and put it away.”
Turns out, one was enough.
“I thought it was a well played game on both ends,” Manville said. “The intensity was there. For us to play that type of game was surprising to me because we had only played four games since (early) December.”
The Panthers are 4-1 overall and travel to Suttons Bay in another showdown Saturday.
“We get a day to regroup before we go to Suttons Bay — and Suttons Bay is as talented a Class D team as any around,” Manville said. “This is a tough stretch for us. We were hoping to get one win out of this road trip, maybe now we can get two.”
Junior David Loney was the lone Panther in double figures Thursday. He finished with 22.
“We have a veteran team, but we’re still young,” Manville said. “You usually don’t have that. These guys played last year as sophomores and freshmen. We have only have three seniors (that play).”
Glen Lake has just two seniors — Lee and LaCross — in its playing group. Lee finished with 18 points and LaCross 13.
“What I love about it is that we’re going to get better,” Hazelton said. “We’re young. What people don’t realize is that we play two seniors and seven juniors and sophomores. These younger guys are learning the intensity level you need to play at on varsity. By the end of the year, we’ll be a tough team to beat.”
The Lakers let this game slip away at the foul line, hitting just 6 of 14 at the line.
“Our free throw shooting in the fourth quarter (3 of 9), that’s been our Achilles heel all season long,” Hazelton said. “We haven’t shot 50 percent in a game yet. When you do that it comes back to haunt you in close games like this.”