By TOM WILLIAMS
Ocean City fans came out today for the 8th Annual Butch Gleason Memorial Coaches vs Cancer Day at the Dixie Howell Gymnasium. There were college and NBA basketball tickets, autographed items and more in a silent auction throughout the day and thousands of dollars were raised to help fight cancer.
The Raiders split the two basketball games – the girls (10-2) losing to Clearview, 45-40, after leading by 11. And the boys (8-3) edging Clearview, 74-67, in overtime by making 13 of 16 free throws in the extra period.
Both OCHS teams will face Mainland in important Cape-Atlantic League National Conference games on Wednesday – the girls in Ocean City and the boys in Linwood.
The Raiders led at halftime, 22-14, in the girls game with Clearview and took a nine-point lead into the fourth quarter. But the Pioneers (7-5) took control of the boards and rallied – once scoring eight straight points. They outscored OCHS, 21-7, in the final eight minutes.
Senior Kilie Wyers had 13 points on five-for-eight shooting for the Raiders. The rest of the Ocean City team shot just 26 percent in the game. Mickey Baker added eight points along with six rebounds and three steals. Danielle Donoghue had six points, six rebounds and three assists. In addition to their struggles from the field, the Raiders shot just 50 percent from the foul line.
The Ocean City boys had a similar collapse. They led by 10 halfway through the fourth period but Clearview (6-7) made five of six shots, including a pair of three-pointers, down the stretch and sent the game into overtime.
But the Raiders bounced back.
The Pioneers went up by two points in the extra period but OCHS junior Donovan Graham drilled a three-pointer, then quickly made a steal and layup, to give the Raiders the lead for keeps. They kept that lead by their impressive foul shooting down the stretch. Luke Varallo made five of six from the line and Tom Jamison was four-for-four.
Graham led four Raiders in double figures with 16 points. He talks about the game and his season so far in an exclusive video interview, below.
Jake McQuarrie added 15 points, Jamison 14 and Joe Sacco 12. Eric Greenling, the 6-5 sophomore playing in his second game, was impressive inside and scored eight points while blocking multiple shots.
Justin McNichols scored 25 points for Clearview, including five from three-point range.
FREE THROWS: Butch Gleason’s wife (Denise), daughter (Melissa) and daughter-in-law (Diana) were on hand to assist with the fund-raising …. Ocean City’s second round of games with Mainland, originally scheduled as a doubleheader in the Battle by the Bay, will not be part of that event when it is played Feb. 2-4 at Stockton University. Instead, the girls will play in Linwood and the boys in Ocean City on a date to be determined …. the OCHS boys will go to Vineland on Jan. 29 to make up the game postponed on Dec. 15 …. box scores, schedules, results, stats and more are available at http://www.oceancitysports.com/OCDiary.html.