GREENFIELD — It’s been quite the turnaround for the Class of 2016.
Nearly doubling their win total from a season ago, Greenfield-Central’s seven veterans ended their final home game in winning fashion Thursday, sneaking past visiting Plainfield in overtime on senior night to secure a 66-62 win.
Holding a four-point lead at halftime, the Cougars fell behind by three points after three quarters but used a fourth quarter comeback, including a basket at the buzzer from sophomore forward Will O’Conner, to force the extra period.
From there, Greenfield-Central outscored the visitors 10-6 in overtime.
Senior Tate Hall led the team, which also earned its 10th straight win, with 26 points and 10 rebounds. He also scored the go ahead basket in overtime for Greenfield-Central to help fend off the Quakers and finished 12 of 15 at the charity stripe.
Blake Robertson and Chandler Bean, also seniors, scored 17 and 12 points, respectively.
“We just have a lot of emotion right now,” Hall said. “I don’t think this school has won 10 games in a row ever. I really, towards the end, was trying to get to the basket and to the line.”
Greenfield-Central (19-4), which finished 10-15 in 2015, now shifts focus to a loaded New Castle Sectional field with its confidence high.
“We have some good momentum now,” Hall added. “We have high hopes.”
In the first half against the Quakers on Thursday, the Cougars fell behind early, 9-4, with just under four minutes remaining in the opening quarter but closed on a 9-2 run, with baskets from four different players, to take a 13-11 lead into the second period.
Plainfield would not go away, however, and nearly matched the home team in the second quarter (9-7). Hall took control just before the break, though, notching a 3-pointer with 1:40 left to take a 22-18 advantage into the half.
Hall and Robertson each had seven points by halftime.
Plainfield outscored the Cougars 17-10 in the third quarter, but Greenfield-Central continued to attack until the final buzzer.
For the game, Greenfield-Central finished 21 of 41 from the field while Plainfield was 19 of 40.
Jarrett Hufferd led the Quakers with 16 points.
Greenfield-Central opens tournament play at 6 p.m. Tuesday against Richmond (10-14), the defending Sectional 9 champions.
“Richmond is very athletic and really attacks the rim,” Cougars head coach Michael Lewis said, who moves to 29-19 in his second year with the team. “We will need to be ready to defend the bounce.”
In the junior varsity contest, Greenfield-Central used a 10-1 run in overtime to seal a 43-34 win.