LAGRANGE — Keystone celebrated a milestone and extended its winning streak Tuesday night.
And all it took was two overtimes and another huge performance from Brody Kuhl.
Sure, that’s all.
Kuhl took charge, scoring 23 of the Wildcats’ final 25 points to propel them past Fairview 55-51 in double overtime in a Patriot Athletic Conference crossover game.
Kuhl, who finished with a game-high 32, also etched his name in Keystone history with his 1,000th career point on a layup in overtime.
The win was the seventh straight for Keystone 13-4, 8-3 in conference play. Fairview fell to 14-4, 9-4.
“I knew going in this was a huge game and you have to give Fairview credit, they played really hard,” Kuhl said. “We fight until the last second is off the clock and I know what it takes to put my team on the back to win the ball game.”
After a slow start, Kuhl woke up in a big way in the fourth quarter.
He tied the game at 34 with a layup and free throw with three minutes remaining in regulation and followed that with a 3-pointer and two free-throws.
With the ’Cats trailing 41-39 with 30 seconds remaining, Kuhl calmly drove to the basket for a layup to force overtime.
Then, a minute into the extra period, Kuhl scored his 1,000th career point on a layup plus the foul, giving Keystone a 45-41 lead. Play was briefly stopped to acknowledge the accomplishment.
“It was such a big moment but at the same time we still were in a very close game,” Kuhl said.
Fairview’s Luke Howes (18 points) made a free throw to tie the game at 47 and send the game to a second overtime.
Kuhl was 6-of-6 from the free throw line in the second overtime and came up with two huge rebounds to ice the game.
“Brody was the best player on the court and he was able to put his team on his back and make some big plays,” Keystone coach Jeff Holzhauer said.
The Wildcats started the game ice cold offensively, scoring just one field goal in more than 10 minutes.
Luckily for Keystone, Fairview wasn’t much better and could only muster a 6-3 lead after the first quarter.
The Wildcats took their first lead midway through the second quarter and led 16-14 at halftime.
“We were coming off a big game on Friday (a 40-38 win over Buckeye) and you always worry how your team will respond in the next game,” Holzhauer said. “We weren’t mentally prepared early, we just weren’t.”
The teams traded the lead seven times in the third quarter as neither could put together a run to pull away.
Kuhl got his 32 points despite scoring just five points on 1-of-6 shooting in the first half.
“Fairview played good defense and we made a lot of little mistakes in the first half but got it together and did some damage in the second,” Kuhl said.
Contact Paul Williams at 329-7135 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Keystone 55, Fairview 51
FAIRVIEW (51): Owen Morrison 1-2-4, Martin Lowry 2-3-7, Colin Caja 4-2-10, Turner Hahn 0-0-0, Grant Hawes 1-1-3, Aiden Salupo 0-0-0, Luke Howes 3-11-18, Mike Roth 1-0-3, Noak Mesaros 3-0-6. Totals 15-19-51.
KEYSTONE (55): Drake Rodick 5-1-11, Ethan Sokolowski 1-1-3, Brody Kuhl 8-14-32, Kevin Mealwitz 0-1-1, Matt Mealwitz 0-0-0, Mason Strader 1-0-2, Jeremy Gerhardinger 3-0-6. Totals 18-17-55.
Fairview 6 8 14 13 6 4 — 51
Keystone 3 13 9 16 6 8 — 55
Three point goals: Fairview 2-11 (Howes, Roth), Kestone 2-14 (Kuhl 2). Field goals: Fairview 15-51 (29 percent), Keystone 18-54 (33 percent). Free throws: Fairview 19-27 (70 percent), Keystone 17-27 (63 percent). Total fouls: Fairview 20, Keystone 19. Turnovers: Fairview 12, Keystone 15.
Junior varsity: Keystone, 50-34