O'Fallon junior's defense leads Panthers to win
O’Fallon junior guard Kyle Dismukes probably earned himself some family bragging rights in the Panthers’ 60-56 overtime victory over the Collinsville Kahoks on Friday night.
Dismukes, whose uncle is veteran Kahoks coach Darin Lee, scored all seven of his points in the fourth quarter and overtime, but more importantly made three late-game defensive plays to help secure the Southwestern Conference win.
Two of turnovers came off inbound passes, the second of which set the stage for the Panthers to seal the win. But his biggest play came in the final seconds of regulation and truly was a game-saver.
Tied at 52 with about three seconds left, Collinsville’s Cawhan Smith got behind the O’Fallon defense following a missed Panthers shot and appeared on his way to making an easy layup just as time expired.
But a streaking Dismukes caught up with him near the top of the key and got him tied up while being called for a foul.
With Collinsville not yet in the bonus, the Kahoks were forced to inbound the ball with 1.6 seconds left.
When Aaron Molton’s 3-pointer failed to fall, the game went to overtime.
“I guess that was just a hustle play,” said Dismukes. “I was just trying to stop him the best I could.
“I knew the situation, and I knew if he had a chance to get a layup they were going to win it.”
“That was a huge play because if he doesn’t foul him it might be over,” said O’Fallon coach Brian Muniz, who team improved to 9-11 and 4-4 in SWC play. “And he does it again there at the end.
“He’s an all-effort kid, and that is why he is out there.”
A Ray’Sean Taylor basket put Collinsville up early in the overtime and a short Smith jumper from in the lane had the Kahoks ahead 56-55 with 1:10 to go.
But the shortest player on the floor would put the Panthers in front for good with five seconds to go, as Terron Bowman II knocked down a wide-open 3 to make it 58-56 with five seconds to go.
The 5-foot-8 Bowman had missed his first six shots of the game before finally making his first shot (a 3-pointer) in the fourth quarter.
“I had been having a rough day from the start, but Coach said he had faith in me and told me I was going to hit it,” said Bowman, who like Dismukes scored all of his eight points late in the game. “So I had faith in myself if my teammates got it to me, and I hit the shot.”
That set the stage for Dismukes’ final big defensive play, as he broke up the ensuing inbound pass.
“They were trying to get it into their best player (Taylor) and I saw him stumble a little bit, the ball slipped out and I just gave my best effort to get to it,” said Dismukes.
That paved the way for a pair of Jalen Hodge free throws to make it 60-56 with less than a second to go.
“We’ve had a lot of close games lately and tonight maybe it caught up with us,” Lee said “We’ve got to do a better job playing well early and then putting teams away before we get to the end.”
Dismukes isn’t sure what the outcome means next time he gets together with Lee for a family gathering.
O’Fallon’s win gave it a season sweep of Collinsville. The Panthers downed the Kahoks 59-52 in both teams’ SWC opener at Southern Illinois University Edwardsville in early December.
The Kahoks dropped to 13-9 and 2-6 in conference play with the loss.
“I am sure we will laugh about it in a couple of years,” Dismukes said. “But I really enjoy playing against his teams. It brings a little extra energy.”
A 17-point first half from Hodge helped O’Fallon forge a 25-18 lead. Taylor tallied 10 points in the third quarter for Collinsville, sending the game into the final quarter tied at 36.
O’Fallon took a six-point lead in the fourth quarter, but a Marshall Harrison bucket from the baseline for Collinsville tied it at 52, which would be the score when the game went to overtime.
Hodge topped all scorers with 29 points for the Panthers.
Taylor had 23 to lead Collinsville. Keydrian Jones and Damien Clark both had 11 points for the Kahoks.