CENTRALIA — Baskets didn't come easy for the Belleville East Lancers, and they had both themselves and the Centralia Orphans' defense to blame.
Ryan Obermeier scored all four of his points on free throws in the final 43 seconds as the Orphans held off the Lancers 42-39 on Friday at the Centralia Thanksgiving Tournament.
"We (weren't) running offense tonight," East coach Abel Schrader said. "It was a lot of one-on-a-couple-of-guys, and we have to get better at that.
"Believe it or not, we do have offenses that we want to run. We want to get movement. Tonight, it was lot of individuals, and we have some good players who can do that. But, we have to run offense, move the defense and see if we can get some better attempts."
The Lancers had the ball trailing 40-39, but Cameron Hunter was called for a charging foul as he tried to weave his way through traffic to the basket with 7.4 seconds left.
"You have stay square and you have to have courage to be able to do that," Centralia coach Lee Bennett said of drawing the charge. "I thought that was a big play. I think that was Ryan Obermeier. D'Aaron (Owens) took a couple of big ones (charges).
"Obviously, he is smaller, but he gets down and he stays in his stance and he stays tough and he does what we call 'dig boards.' It takes more than physical ability to do that. There are kids with physical ability who won't do that."
The Orphans drew five charges on the Lancers in the game.
"They're a tough defensive team," Schrader said. "They certainly try to keep you out of the lane and they're in position. Our guys have to do a better job of jump-stopping and pitching or shooting the basketball."
Obermeier sank two free throws with 4.7 left, getting a second chance after he missed the first one due to a lane violation on the Lancers.
The Orphans fouled Darreon Reddick with 3.1 seconds on the clock, and he missed the front end of a one-and-one.
Chase Alcorn missed three free throws -- he got an extra try after the Lancers were called for another lane violation -- with 1.4 ticks remaining.
The Lancers inbounded the ball from under the Orphans' basket with one seconds to go, but Alcorn intercepted Drew Millas' baseball pass to end the game.
The Orphans (3-0) can clinch the championship of the tournament when they play Mahomet Seymour at 7:45 p.m. Saturday.
Jake Wood was the top scorer for the Orphans with 17 points. Alcorn had 14 points and five rebounds.
The Lancers (2-1), who play Jerseyville at 11 a.m. Saturday, were led by Hunter with 19 points and seven rebounds. Reddick added nine points.
The Lancers pulled out to a 7-0 lead as Reddick scored on a layup and hit a 3-pointer.
Reddick later picked up his second foul and went to the bench for the rest of the first quarter and part of the second.
The Orphans pulled in front 9-7 on a two free throws by Alcorn.
A pull-up jumper from Alcorn gave the Orphans a 11-9 edge at the end of the first quarter, but the Lancers went up 14-13 on a 3 by Drew Millas.
"I thought we kept (ourselves) in the game, obviously it didn't get away from us, but we need to have (Reddick) on the floor as much as possible for us," Schrader said.
The Orphans scored the final six points of the second quarter, including a 3 by Wood, to take a 20-14 advantage into halftime.
Reddick hit a 3-pointer to send the Lancers on a 10-2 run at the start of the third quarter.
A layup by Hunter off a no-look pass from Reddick gave the Lancers a 24-22 lead.
A 3 by freshman EnRico Sylvester helped the Lancers take a 27-26 lead into the fourth quarter.
The lead changed hands three times in the fourth quarter with the Orphans grabbing it for good with a 6-0 run that included two inside buckets by Wood.
Wood's second bucket put the Orphans ahead 38-33 with 1:35 to play.
A three-point play by Hunter drew the Lancers within 38-36, but Obermeier made two free throws to give the Orphans a 40-36 cushion with 43 seconds left.
A three-point play by East's Austin Cox off a dunk closed the gap to 40-39.
Alcorn committed a turnover with 25 seconds left, but Hunter was called for the charge.
"Centralia has what, five guys back from last year," Schrader said. "They're a good ballclub. They're going to win 20-plus games. We played a good team, we played them tough."
Jerseyville, thanks to 22 points from Luke Shively, beat Mahomet-Seymour 61-58 on Friday.
Shively connected on back-to-back 3s to put the Panthers in front in the late going, and then added two free throws with 3.4 seconds left.
Contact reporter Steve Korte at firstname.lastname@example.org or 239-2522.