PHILADELPHIA, Penn. -- Blair Academy erased a double digit second half deficit, and held on for a 56-55 victory over Life Center Academy on Saturday evening at the Scholastic Play by Play Classic.
Even though he missed a pair of critical free throws with :04 left that could have given Blair some insurance, guard Ben Kenyon stripped Life Center's Mike Lasme with two ticks left on the clock to preserve the Buccaneer victory.
Blair trailed 43-31 with 1:55 to play in the third quarter. The Bucs responded with a 17-5 rally to deadlock the game at 48 with 3:16 to play on a fast break bucket by Roberto Felipe.
Kenyon gave Blair the lead for good when he converted a lay-in on a fast break that made it 53-52 with :57 remaining.
Jason Haas hit a pair of free throws to push the lead to 56-53, but Life Center's Mike Lasme countered with a basket to cut the deficit to 56-55 with 10 seconds left.
That set the stage for Kenyon, who went from a goat to a hero in the span of two seconds when he picked Lasme clean at halfcourt after missing a pair of free throws.
Charlie Villanueva was a force for Blair all night long, collecting 22 points in the win. And while Luol Deng struggled, he managed to make some big plays in the comeback and finished with 11 points in the win.
Lasme, the UMass bound combo guard, led the Warriors with 16 points in defeat, while shrapshooter Derek Stribling added 11 points.