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EHT: Host With The Most

Posted on 1/1/2017, 11:30 AM

Big Shot Braden did it again.

The 6-foot-4 junior from Eldorado stole the spotlight when it shined the brightest on the Eagles since 2007.

It"s been that long since the Eagles had a chance for a title in their own holiday tournament. Attebury was certain his team wasn"t going to leave empty handed.

The 6-foot-4 junior took home Most Valuable Player honors, finishing with 22 points, including 14 in the fourth quarter and overtime of Eldorado"s thrilling 57-47 win over Herrin to give the host school their eighth EHT title.

Herrin led 32-28 after three and held a five-pont 37-32 lead with 3:20 to play after a bucket by the Tigers" Ty Downen, but that"s when Attebury and Eldorado went to work.

Attebury provided a jumper to trim the deficit to two at 39-37 and then answered the call with what might be the biggest shot of his career, drilling a 3-pointer from the left side of Duff-Kingston Gymnasium that gave Eldorado a 39-37 lead with 12 seconds left.

On the ensuing play, Herrin"s Jacob Hartline was fouled with 0.5 remaining. Hartline had to leave the game with an injury. Herrin then called upon senior Dalton Bush to come in and make two free throws that sent the game into overtime.

But Attebury picked up right where he left off, knocking down a deep bomb from the other side of the court and Eldorado never looked back, making 13-of-14 free throws in the extra session.

For Attebury that moment when he was handed the championship trophy was something he has dreamed about since he was a little kid.

"It"s No. 1," Attebury said. "When I was a little kid, I dreamt of wining the EHT and now that it has happened, it"s probably No. 1 for me. The only thought I had when I took that shot was that we are going to win this, there was no doubt, this was our night."

For Eldorado head coach Josh Bradley, the game was one that he could only describe as "crazy."

"We didn"t shoot well for about three and three-quarter quarters. I told Attebury, "man just keeping shooting it, you"re going to hit a game-winner, you"re going to make one." Down by one, kind of like it was against Carrier Mills (at the Vienna Classic), we come across the top and go for three and the kid hits a big shot.

"This is just a great group of kids, they battled for four quarters and gave themselves a chance to win and when you do that, good things happen."

In the OT session, Eldorado had a stretch of seven straight made free throws and for Herrin coach Mike Mooneyham, he knows there isn"t a lot a team can do when the opposition is making those shots.

"They knocked them down. I think they shot 20-for-26 and we shot 4-for-8. That"s a pretty big difference, between the two, but you have to hand it to (Eldorado). When you knock free throws down like that, that"s how you win."

DJ Spell scored 10 points before fouling out for Herrin (8-3). Bronson Nesler and Jake Downen each scored nine points.

Spell and Nesler were named as All-Tournament selections for Herrin.

Jacob Traxler was an All-Tournament selection from Eldorado. Traxler finished with six points, and Ethan Partridge scored 12. Kale Oglesby was 8-of-8 from the foul line for all of his scoring.

Eldorado led 12-6 after the first quarter, but fell behind 21-20 at halftime.

Attebury is the first Eldorado player to take home MVP honors from the EHT since Dallas Robinson did it for the Eagles in that 2007 season.

The adjective that Bradley said he could use to describe is junior forward is "unconscious."

"He believes, every shot is going to go in and so do I," Bradley said. Even when he"s struggling, I still believe the next shot is going to go in. He plays that way and the team believes in him."

Michael Dann covers prep and college sports for the Harrisburg Daily Register and Eldorado Daily Journal. Follow him on Twitter: @spydieshooter.

Herrin 6 15 11 7 8-47

Eldorado 12 8 8 11 18-57

Herrin (47): Hartline 1 0-0 3, Nesler 3 0-0 9, Spell 4 2-4 10, J. Downen 4 1-2 9, Ringle 1 0-1 2, Bush 1 2-2 4, T. Downen 4 0-0 8, McCormick 1 0-0 2. Totals 19 5-9 47.

Eldorado (57): Meredith 0 2-2 2, Oglesby 0 8-8 8, Partridge 6 0-4 12, Attebury 8 4-4 22, Traxler 2 2-3 6, Kasiar 1 3-6 5, May 1 0-0 2. Totals 18 19-27 57.

3-pointers: Herrin 4 (Nesler 3, Hartline), Eldorado 2 (Attebury). Team fouls: Herrin 18, Eldorado 14. Fouled out: Spell, J. Downen, Hartline, Traxler. Records: Herrin is 8-3, Eldorado is 14-1.