SANDY Moments after Waterford's loss to Ben Lomond, Jordan Augustine was disgusted with his own play. Given an opportunity to secure a victory over the Scots at the free-throw line, the Ravens' junior misfired.
Augustine resolved to not let history repeat itself against Rowland Hall.
"This week I shot 2,000 free throws before the game," Augustine said. "I wasn't going to come out and lose another game because of a missed free throw."
Augustine made good on his vow, draining seven of eight from the line in final minute and a half to help Waterford break a two-game losing streak with a 48-42 victory over the Winged Lions on Wednesday night.
Such precision from the line was merely an extension of his sizzling fourth-quarter shooting performance. The junior guard scored 10 of his 14 points in the final six minutes.
It began after Vince Otiede tied the game at 33-33 with a 3-pointer with 6:30 left. Augustine followed with his own 3-pointer to give the Ravens a three-point lead on their next possession. Then he drove for a layup to make the lead 38-33 with 4:59 left.
Zach Arthur pulled Rowland Hall back within two points 12 seconds later after draining a 3-point shot. But that was the only field goal for the Winged Lions in a six-minute stretch of the fourth quarter.
Augustine's foul shooting made sure they couldn't recover and rescued Waterford from 13 turnovers.
Many of those miscues were caused by the quick hands of Arthur and Daniel Livscy. They combined for steals on three straight possessions in the third quarter, sparking an 8-0 run that gave Rowland Hall a 26-25 lead on Carter Haslam's three.
Waterford coach Reid Monson can live much easier with early season mistakes as long as his team continues to show improvement from game to game.
"A bad win is better than a good loss so long as you learn from them," Monson said.
Waterford was able to finally capitalize on its outside shot late in the game because of so much attention paid to sophomore center Neal Monson. Monson routinely drew double teams in the post, which allowed him to kick out to open teammates.Monson, who scored 18 points and grabbed eight rebounds. He averaged 20 points and 12.3 rebounds.
With such a player at their disposal, success is much easier to attain."We had the power the middle," coach said Monson. "Neal helped work (things) out for us inside. He's playing phenomenal basketball for us."