Depending on young basketball players is never easy because there are sure to be growing pains.
The Kapaun Mount Carmel boys are loaded with young and inexperienced players, and sometimes it has been uncomfortable to watch the overthrown passes, out-of-control ballhandling and double dribbles.
Kapaun had too many of those moments on Tuesday night. But in the end, several young players came through in the Crusaders' 40-35 overtime victory over visiting Bishop Carroll.
Sophomore Austin Griffith was 2 of 2 from the free-throw line in overtime, while sophomore Michael Martin hit two overtime free throws and sophomore Trayte Boswell scored seven fourth-quarter points.
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"Once again, we're still young," said Kapaun coach Bernie Pearson, whose team won its second overtime game. "We have five seniors, but three of them didn't play hardly last year. We're still finding our way. It's going to be up-and-down. At some point in time, we'll smooth it out.
"Everybody has to bring it. We don't have great players. We have a good team, not one great player, so it's got to be contributions from everybody."
Boswell scored a game-high 10 points, while Mesfin Smalls and Griffith added seven apiece.
It was a rocky game for both teams. Carroll was 11 of 37 from the floor and 10 of 21 from the free-throw line, while Kapaun was 13 of 35 shooting and 12 of 29 from the line.
And turnovers abounded — Carroll committed 19, Kapaun 18.
"It's a win," Pearson said. "I don't think we played particularly well, but we played well enough to win."
Carroll had a 6-5 lead at the end of the first, Kapaun led 14-13 at the half, and Carroll retook the lead for the 28-26 lead heading into the fourth quarter.
"It was a physical game," said Kapaun's Michael Reynolds, who had 10 rebounds.
"... We didn't run our offense. We needed to settle down and run our offense."
Carroll was led by Brian Rohleder's 10 points, while teammate Blake Bell added 10 rebounds after sitting the first quarter. He missed practice last week when he played in the Under Armour all-star football game.
The Eagles' Chad Darland sent the game into overtime when he drove inside with eight seconds remaining for the 34-all tie.
Martin nearly gave Kapaun the win in regulation when a desperation three rattled around inside the rim before bouncing out.
In overtime, Kapaun finally took control by outscoring Carroll 6-1 — even though the Crusaders were 6 of 13 from the free-throw line in overtime.
"That's our Achilles' heel," Pearson said of free-throw shooting.
Bishop Carroll (2-4,2-4) 6 7 15 6 1 — 35 Kapaun Mount Carmel (4-2, 3-2) 5 9 12 8 6 — 40
CARROLL: Rohleder 2 6-10 10, Slagle 0 3-4 3, Sueper 1 0-1 3, Darland 2 1-2 5, Bieberle 2 0-0 5, Palmore 1 0-0 3, Bell 3 0-4 6. Totals 11 (3) 10-21 35.
KAPAUN: Martin 0 3-7 3, Smalls 3 1-3 7, Reynolds 1 2-7 4, Laviest 1 0-0 3, Knox 1 2-6 4, Knott 1 0-0 2, Boswell 4 1-2 10, Griffith 2 3-4 7. Totals 13 (2) 12-29 40.