CARNEY - Wade Schetter is becoming the biggest hero in Carney-Nadeau since...well, Wade Schetter. With under three seconds remaining in a Class D district opener that felt more like a state title game, Schetter shocked the North Central Jets for the second time in 36 days.
It was a one-armed desperation heave that had absolutely no chance.
Until it did. With the swoosh of the net as time expired, the buzzer was literally drowned out by the uproar of a jam-packed overflowing gym. The Wolves survived 58-57, and surviving is certainly not an understatement.
The game-winning shot was set-up by a technical foul. A recent North Central graduate tossed a pop bottle onto the court at a stoppage in play and a three-point Jets lead was erased in three seconds.
"It's just amazing to have something like that happen. Maybe someone's looking down on us," mused Wolves coach Jake Polfus.
In the teams' previous meeting, (a 40-39 Wolves victory Jan. 31 at Carney) Schetter hit a buzzer triple after taking a pass from Lucas Moreau to beat North Central.
This one may have been even more unlikely.
Shortly after the second half began, Schetter shot an air-ball. The North Central fans took that opportunity to hound the Wolves' guard the rest of the game. Every time Schetter touched the ball from that point a chorus of "Aiiiiirball" rang out from the crowd.
Schetter had 15 points before the miscue and didn't score another point until three seconds remained on the clock. In fact, he only took two shots.
The Wolves had a 31-24 lead at halftime and 52-45 with four minutes remaining in the game.
C-N certainly couldn't exhale though, not with Moreau playing with four fouls for the entire fourth quarter.
The Jets lost freshman Rob Granquist and sophomore Tyler Polfus in the final minutes to fouls, but were still able to fire away at C-N's lead.
Bryce Bilski, having just reached the 1,000-point mark Monday, hit the potential game winner with 14 seconds remaining to give North Central a 55-54 lead. Carney's subsequent possession fell short as Jets center Trevor Ekberg came up with a block on Schetter.
"Just from a comeback standpoint, down that many points to Carney where it's a tough place to win, we came back," said North Central coach Adam Mercier. "Ekberg had a great defensive stop on Schetter in the final seconds and I thought we had the game there."
North Central hauled down the rebound and Trevor Poupore committed an intentional foul with a hard shove. At that moment the crowd erupted and the bottle was thrown.
Cody Whitens made both free throws after the intentional foul to give the Jets a 57-54 lead with three seconds left.
Then Schetter went to the line for the Wolves to shoot the two technical foul shots. With the crowd serenading him, he hit both free throws, his first points of the half, to cut the deficit to 57-56.
The Wolves kept possession and Moreau threw in the inbound pass from half-court to Schetter, who dribbled a few steps and threw up the game-winner.
"Give credit to Wade for making that shot. He stayed calm even with the crowd coming down on him," said Polfus. "We missed a few shots, a few free throws and you just get that gut feeling. I told Wade, just get the shot off. It might have been luck, but he had the will to win," he said.
Schetter scored a game-high 18 points to give him 968 for his career, while Moreau scored 13 and Keenan Lampinen scored 10, including two triples.
North Central (16-6) was led by Bilski's 15 points while Ethan Dombrowski scored 13.
Carney-Nadeau will host Bark River-Harris in Friday's district final at 7 p.m. (EST). The Broncos defeated Mid Peninsula 64-50 Wednesday evening.
North Central 11 13 17 16 - 57
Carney-Nadeau 17 14 14 13 - 58
North Central - Polfus 2, Bilski 15, R. Granquist 8, J. Granquist 4, Whitens 9, Dombrowski 13, Ekberg 6; FT: 15-24; F: 22; Fouled out: Polfus, R. Granquist; 3-point field goals: none.
Carney-Nadeau - Schetter 18, Poupore 6, Johnson 4, Lanaville 7, Lampinen 10, Moreau 13; FT: 13-22; F: 21; Fouled out: None; 3-point field goals: Schetter 3, Lampinen 2.