Bellarmine Prep’s Mar’kese Jackson converted a three-point play with four seconds remaining to give the Lions a dramatic 46-45 win over Union in the 4A district quarterfinals this afternoon at Auburn High School.
Jackson’s late dramatics came after Malachi Flynn poked the ball away from Union’s Micah Paulson, Garrett McKay corralled the steal and passed to Carson Hollyoak, who fed a charging Jackson in the lane. Jackson’s first attempt missed, but he grabbed the rebound and sank a layup while being fouled by the Titans’ Riley Hawken. Cameron Cranston’s three-pointer at the buzzer was off the rim, giving the Lions the win.
Paulson had given the Titans a 41-33 lead with a driving layup with 5:23 remaining, but the Lions slowly crept back. Jackson scored 11 of his team-high 18 points in the fourth quarter, including a three-pointer that pulled them within 41-39 with 2:37 left. Flynn followed by tying it with two free throws on the next possession.
The Lions found it tough going in the middle against Union, as 6-foot-8 forward Isaiah Robinson had nine blocks for the Titans. Hawken was an inside monster as well, finishing with 22 points and 10 rebounds for Union. But the Lions’ Will Wolf tallied 14 points and 11 rebounds, while Rex Bodoia added six points and 10 rebounds.
The Lions advance to face Kentridge in the district semifinals at Auburn High School on Thursday at 7:45 p.m. Like Stadium, the Lions have already punched their ticket to the state regionals.
BELLARMINE PREP: Mar’kese Jackson 18, Will Wolf 14, Rex Bodoia 6, Malachi Flynn 5, Carson Hollyoak 3
UNION: Riley Hawken 22, Micah Paulson 11, Isaiah Anderson 8, Austin Brown 2, Cameron Cranston 2