VIDEO: Coderre's clutch 3 helps Waterford hand Old Lyme its first loss
Waterford — Even the most ardent Waterford High School hater would admit that, in the past decade or so, some spooky things have happened to unsuspecting opponents inside the Francis X. Sweeney Fieldhouse.
A four-point deficit in the first overtime with 10 seconds left — and the game was eventually tied with a 3-pointer from senior Owen Coderre, who may have never made another 3 in his life, including in warm-ups.
Coderre's 3-pointer at the buzzer sent the game to its second overtime, during which the Lancers held on for a 91-85 win over previously undefeated Old Lyme.
"I might have been the most surprised person in the gym when it went in," Coderre said. "I'm not really a 3-point shooter. But I'm proud of the resilience on our team. We never gave up. Playing in this place makes a huge difference."
Waterford coach Bill Bassett, whose team played Wednesday night in Plainfield, agreed with Coderre about resilience and used Coderre as Exhibit A.
"That kid has worked his tail off," Bassett said. "In the past few days, we've moved some things around and Owen lost his spot in the starting lineup. He was disappointed. I was happy about that in a way because it shows what a competitor he is. The last two nights, he's shown huge growth."
Waterford (4-5) has won four of its last six games after an 0-2 start. The Lancers led by 10 in the third quarter, lost the lead and sent the game to overtime on Coderre's layup with seven seconds left in regulation.
Ryan O'Connell led Waterford with 28 points, including a dunk in the second overtime that gave his team a nine-point lead. O'Connell is the lone returning starter from last season's state title team.
"This one means a lot," O'Connell said. "We played last night, six quarters tonight and it all came with a lot of heart."
Liam Kane had 18 points for the Lancers, while Trevor D'Amico had 16, Coderre had 13 and Ryan Bakken 10. Robert Zawacki scored five of his seven points in the second overtime.
"This has not been easy," Bassett said. "But we're starting to see our hard work pay off in a positive way."
Ty Dean, who fouled out with 2:51 left in regulation, led Old Lyme (7-1) with 22 points. Aedan Using had 17, Ray Doll and Brady Sheffield 15 apiece and Jared Ritchie added 10.
"We scheduled Waterford because we know how good they are," said Old Lyme coach Kirk Kaczor, whose team made the state Division V finals last year. "We were hoping to come out of here with a win. But we learned that our guys have resilience tonight and that they'll continue to play together, even when things aren't going well."
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