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Pec wins thriller
Argyles Kyle Emberson finds his way to the hoop for a layup between defenders during a home game against Pecatonica Thursday. Pecatonica beat Argyle 56-53. (Times photo: Anthony Wahl)
ARGYLE - Pecatonica sophomore Logan Green has engineered comebacks on the football field. Green added another thriller to his growing list of shining moments sinking a 3-pointer with 2.7 seconds to go to give the Vikings a thrilling 56-53 win over Argyle Thursday.

"I was struggling with my shot," Green said. "I just wanted to get my stroke back from earlier in the game. I had to have confidence. I knew the next one I shot was going to go in and it happened. A.J. (Hendrickson) did a great job of finding me in the corner."

Pecatonica (4-1, 1-0 Six Rivers East) erased a nine-point deficit in the final 3 minutes to rally for the win. Pecatonica junior Tyler Wahl drilled a 3-pointer late in the fourth quarter to ignite the comeback. Pecatonica sophomore A.J. Hendrickson, who scored a game-high 18 points and grabbed seven rebounds, scored on a layup after a steal by the Vikings. Hendrickson then scored on another layup to slice the Orioles' lead to 51-48. Pecatonica junior Brooks Chandler scored on a coast-to-coast layup and was fouled. He hit the free throw to convert the conventional three-point play to tie the game at 53 with 48.2 seconds to go. That set the stage for Green's late-game heroics.

Despite having two starters out with season-ending injuries in Drew Schliem and Kole Kent, the Vikings survived the conference opener.

"It's hard as a coach trying to tell yourself and your team that you still have a chance, even though deep down there is a shadow of a doubt," Pecatonica coach Matt Fink said. "They brought a defensive intensity in the third quarter we haven't seen this year. They (Argyle) were so well-prepared and coached. It gets a little chippy at times because it's a rivalry. You have to feel fortunate we were able to get out of here with a win. I know there is nowhere else these guys would want to be tonight than here."

For most of the second half, it appeared like Argyle (0-4, 0-1) was poised to pick up its first win. The Orioles stormed back from a 13-point deficit in the first half with a 10-2 run in the third quarter. Argyle junior Kyle Emberson had the hot hand scoring nine points during the surge. Emberson finished with a game-high 18 points. Emberson drilled a 3-pointer with 4 minutes, 19 seconds left in the third quarter to tie the game at 33. Argyle junior Will Herman gave the Orioles a lift scoring six points to go along with six rebounds. Herman scored on a putback at the end of the third quarter to give the Orioles a 38-37 lead. Hendrickson was on the sideline for most of the third quarter trying to overcome an ankle injury. He played just the final 2 minutes of the third quarter, but came on strong in the fourth.

Argyle senior Kyle Olson scored on a layup and Emberson knocked down a 3-pointer with 3:50 left in the fourth quarter to give the Orioles a 47-42 lead. Argyle sophomore Mitchell Dammen scored on a putback with 3 minutes to go to give the Orioles a 51-42 lead. Argyle junior Riley Ostby scored 12 points and had seven rebounds.

"I can't be more proud of the effort," Argyle coach Scott Noll said. "This is the best effort I have got in one year and four games. If we would have played like that in our first three games we would have came in 3-0.

"I told them at the 3-minute timeout to take the air out of the ball. The only thing we did wrong is we let the adrenaline get the best of us. You have to harness that adrenaline into focus because the clock is on our side and we are in the bonus. I think we sent a message to the Six Rivers Conference. Now that they (Argyle) have played with one of the top contenders in the conference, the guys won't fear any team."

Noll was excited with the breakout games he received from Emberson and Herman.

"Kyle Emberson played a great game," Noll said. "He had an intensity the whole game."

Chandler finished with 16 points and made four 3-pointers. The Vikings made six of their nine 3-pointers in the first half. Fink said there were times the Vikings fell in love with the 3-pointer.

"During the timeout with 3 minutes left, we talked about getting to the rim and getting some post touches," he said. "That is what helps 3-point shooters. That is how we play and that is how I coach. We shoot a lot of 3-pointers. We don't shy away from that."

Pecatonica will face another test against Albany Tuesday. Green is confident the Vikings can make a run for a conference title even with some injuries.

"I think we definitely still have the athletes to compete for conference," he said.