HOLDEN - It took an entire game, but a flurry of free throws in the closing seconds helped Albany survive with a 46-41 victory Monday over Holden.
The contest was a much-needed boost Albany, the No. 27 rated team in the most recent Class 3A power ratings. Holden, 12th in Class B, was fighting to try and solidify its position to host a first-round playoff game
“I felt like we had a good game plan,” Albany coach Chris Carter said. “They (Holden) made us beat them over the top, and we were able to get help from all over, especially (center) Tyler Quamme, who helped alter a lot of shots.”
Albany’s defense limited Holden two a pair of first-quarter field goals, building a 10-5 lead. The first basket for the Rockets was a three-pointer from Dylan Gueldner, who was the game’s leading scorer with 13 points, but was held scoreless in the final eight minutes of play.
Four different players for Albany (16-14) hit free throws in the final three minutes while repelling each of Holden’s drives down the lane.
“We felt like our team was really playing together,” said Albany’s Trey Yelverton. “There were things that Holden did well which gave us challenges, but we were able to get the job done.”
There were 11 lead changes in the first half, but Trey Yelterton’s 3-point shot midway of the first half gave Albany a lead they wouldn’t relinquish despite Holden’s numerous challenges down the stretch.
Holden (24-13) has games remaining at Patrick Taylor on Feb. 12 and in the season finale at home against Pine on Feb. 15.
Albany has four games left, including a home game with Pearl River on Wednesday.
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