Ryan Flynn's layup off an assist from Jordan Gaitley as time expired gave Fordham Prep a 50-48 win over St. Edmund Prep in the CHSAA A Division Quarterfinals in Queens on Saturday. The Rams held for the last shot after taking possession in a tied game with 32.4 seconds left, putting the ball in the hands of Gaitley, who penetrated and found Flynn for the game-winner.
After trailing for the first three quarters, St. Edmund Prep rallied early in the fourth and took a 43-41 lead on Belim Purisic's 3-pointer with 5:30 left to play. Fordham Prep came back to tie it at 48 on a free throw by Patrick Mahoney with 2:25 left, and Flynn's basket, the only points in the final 2:25 of the game, sent the Rams into the CHSAA A Division Semifinals, where they will face Monsignor McClancy on Tuesday night.
Mahoney put up 11 points for Fordham Prep in the opening quarter, and the Rams held a 19-10 lead at the end of the first.
St. Edmund Prep narrowed the margin in the second frame, as a steal and spectacular two-handed dunk by Jordan Williams made it 20-15 with 5:45 left in the half. Fordham Prep extended the lead to 25-17 on George Schilling's basket at the 3:00 mark, but the Eagles answered with a 3-pointer by Shemar Latty before Gaitley's mid-range jumper put the Rams in front 27-20 at the half.
Fordham Prep took a 12 point lead at 38-26 after James Murray's corner 3-pointer with 1:15 left in the third, but Purisic's 3-pointer on the ensuing possession was the start of a 7-0 run for St. Edmund Prep, with back-to-back baskets by Williams trimming Fordham Prep's lead to 38-31 heading into the fourth.
After the Eagles tied it at 38 and again at 40, Fordham Prep took a 41-40 lead on a free throw by Gaitley with 5:35 left. St. Edmund Prep finally pulled ahead 43-41 on a 3-pointer by Burisic, and the Eagles took a 45-41 lead on Latty's jumper with 4:00 left to play. Two free throws by Mahoney made it 45-43, and Murray converted a pair to knot the score at 45 with just 3:30 left. Another 3-pointer by Purisic gave St. Edmund Prep a 48-45 lead, but Flynn's follow-up on the next possession made it a one point game at 48-47, and Mahoney made one of two from the stripe to tie it at 48 with 2:25 to play.
St. Edmund Prep took possession after Mahoney stepped out of bounds on a baseline drive, and the Eagles burned their final timeout with 50.1 seconds on the clock. Fordham Prep defended the possession, as Flynn rebounded a missed three by Jonathan Auguste, and the Rams called for time with 32.9 ticks left. Holding for the last shot, Murray waited until the clock wound down before putting the ball in the hands of Gaitley, who drove the lane and fed Flynn for a layup as time expired.
Mahoney finished with 17 points, while Gaitley and Murray scored 11 each for Fordham Prep. Purisic had 16 points and Williams scored 15 for St. Edmund Prep.
Free throws were a factor in this game, as Fordham Prep got to the line 17 times and converted 12, while the Eagles made one of just three attempts from the stripe.