Boys basketball: Shelton Gaels lose on last-second shot

In an early match up of two SCC foes, Shelton and Sheehan did not disappoint as the contest came down the final 10 seconds before the Titans defeated the Gaels 71-69.

On the game’s final play, Cameron Afanador nailed a fade-away floating shot over Shelton’s 6-foot-6 Mel Kolenovic to win the game with 1.4 seconds left. The Gaels made a last second heave toward the hoop, but it bounced out.

“They made one more play than us, said Shelton coach Brian Gardiner. “That kid hit a tough shot. He hit a floater, falling out of bounds over the tallest kid on the floor. What else can you do?”

Brian Berritto lit up the scoreboard with 32 points while Peri Basimakopoulos scored 12 points in the second half on four 3-pointers.

Kristopher Jackson led the Titans with 20 points while Jack McDonnell scored 19.

Jakai Barnes hit a layup to start the fourth quarter, giving Shelton a 57-55 lead.

Sheehan went back on top. Martin Dominguez made two shots from the line, before Jackson’s layup upped the margin to 63-59.

Basimakopoulos answered with a three pointer and a Berritto drive gave Shelton the lead at 64-63.

After two Jackson buckets, Basimakopoulos tied the game at 67 with a trey.

McDonnell took back the lead with a layup with just over a minute to play.

The Titans then sent Berritto to the line and he made both to tie the game at 69 with 9.4 seconds left.

“We have a lot of potential, Gardiner said. “We just have to win close games and go from there.”

Sheehan (6-3) led Shelton (4-3) by two points at 20-19 after one quarter.

Brian Belade had seven points in the period.

Berritto had nine points in the second, and Kolenovic made a pair of baskets from the block, but the Titans put together a 9-0 run and led 39-35 at the break.

Berritto began the second half with a layup, and Belade went to the line and made a free throw. Kevin Belden scored off a drive and the lead went back and forth.

Basimakopoulos hit his first of four treys, and Berritto added to that with a three of his own for a 49-48 Shelton advantage. Berritto and Basimakopoulos were money from beyond the arc the rest of the frame, and the game was tied at 55 going into the final period.

“He’s been playing better in the second halves then in the first this year, Gardiner said of Basimakopoulos. “He’s been a second-half player and you saw that. He’s hit some key shots for us. He’s been doing that all season.”

Shelton will visit Career Friday and Foran High on Tuesday.