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Wildcats lose fourth-quarter lead, then game

By KEN SMITH

© St. Petersburg Times, published January 27, 2001


ST. PETERSBURG -- Seventy-six seconds. That's how long it took for St. Petersburg Catholic to erase a nine-point deficit at the beginning of the fourth quarter against Wesley Chapel on Friday. The Barons' frenzied comeback culminated in a 76-67 victory.

Trailing from the outset, the Barons trailed 52-43 at the end of the third quarter. But things changed quickly. The Barons' Kevin Farrell began the comeback with a layup off of a steal.

Then came the game's turning point. Wesley Chapel's Spencer Honeycutt was whistled for a technical foul after protesting his foul of Chris Davis.

Davis made both free throws, followed by Dave Lopez making two free throws. Farrell then completed a three-point play to tie it at 52 with 6:44 left. The teams exchanged the lead until another Farrell jumper put St. Petersburg Catholic ahead for good at 56-55. Six consecutive points by Davis helped the Barons stretch the lead to 69-60 with three minutes left.

The Wildcats got to within six on a three-point play by Tyrone Tomlin, but Mike Martino's putback off of a missed foul shot extended the Baron lead to eight. The Wildcats got no closer.

The Wildcats led by as many as 18 points in the first half behind the shooting of Scott Sorenson and Tomlin. "We came out flat, which disappointed me," Baron coach Mike Moran said. "But our defense got our offense going in the second half. (Chris) Davis' defense on Sorenson really picked us up."

Sorenson entered the game averaging 28 points per game. He scored 14 in the first half but was held in check afterward. Farrell and Davis combined for 40 points, many of them on fast breaks after Wildcat turnovers.

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