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Boys Basketball: Metea Valley wears down Providence

BrysOliver (middle) MeteValley is fouled by Miles BoykProvidence as Celtics guard Tyler Pyggives chase. | JCunningham/For Sun-Times Media

Bryson Oliver (middle) of Metea Valley is fouled by Miles Boykin of Providence as Celtics guard Tyler Pygon gives chase. | Jon Cunningham/For Sun-Times Media

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Updated: January 30, 2014 6:43AM

Metea Valley’s Marquell Oliver took ownership of the third quarter during Friday’s second-round game vs. Providence in York’s 40th Jack Tosh Holiday Classic.

Oliver scored 11 of his game-high 24 points in the third quarter to lead the Mustangs to a 55-46 victory and a berth in Saturday quarterfinals against Lyons.

“I think we were disappointed with how things ended in the first half,” Mustangs coach Bob Vozza said. “We’re up 21-15 and they call timeout and go on a 6-0 run to end the half, and they had an opportunity to go on an 8-0 or 10-0 run there. We talked at halftime about responding.”

Metea Valley (7-4) heeded Vozza’s advice, with Oliver leading the way. He drained two three-pointers, had a highlight-worthy left-handed layup, then added the free throw to complete a three-point play.

“I think we started to emphasize defense and stopping the guys we were guarding and then collectively stopping their team,” Oliver said. “We started to get some great looks at the basket by attacking more and finally started to play good team basketball.”

Providence (5-6) trailed 40-32 entering the fourth quarter and struggled shooting the ball. The Celtics shot just 38 percent (17-of-45) from the field, including 1-of-15 beyond the three-point arc.

“We’re in a rut; we’ve shot 2-for-26 on three-pointers the past two games,” Celtics coach Tim Trendel said. “Right now you can see the lack of confidence in the kids’ eyes. We’re shooting not to miss instead of with confidence.”

The Mustangs enjoyed their biggest lead of the night at 45-32 with 6:18 remaining. The Celtics climbed to within five points on three occasions until Nick Dodson (15 points) sealed the contest by sinking 4-of-6 free throws in the final minute.

Ryan Brankin led the Celtics with 15 points. Mitch Vander Wey added nine.

The Mustangs shot 46 percent (17-of-37) from the field, but made just 17-of-27 free throws. The Celtics converted 11-of-21 free throws.

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