MANSFIELD — Casey Geissman didn’t score much, but Buckeye Central’s reserve guard did his damage when it mattered most.
A 5-foot-10 junior, Geissman scored all six of his points in triple overtime as the ninth-seeded Bucks knocked off No. 8 Mansfield Christian 60-58 in a Division IV sectional opener Tuesday at The Furnace.
Buckeye Central (10-13) will play No. 1 seed South Central at 7 p.m. Friday for the sectional championship.
Used sparingly most of the evening, Geissman bounced off the bench in the third four-minute extra session and brought instant offense.
He hit both ends of a one-and-one with two minutes remaining to cut Mansfield Christian’s lead to 57-56. Then, after teammate Alex Kanney misfired on a pair of freebies, Geissman came up with an offensive rebound to preserve the possession.
Geissman then scored on a driving left-handed layup on the ensuing inbounds play to give the Bucks a 58-57 lead with 1:17 remaining. He capped with two more pressure-filled free throws with 9.8 seconds to play, giving BC a 60-57 lead.
“He won the game for us,” Buckeye Central coach Tom Howell said matter-of-factly. “You don’t like to put it on one person because a lot of things happen. A lot of people do a lot of good things but Casey Geisiman … I’ve got to give him a lot of credit.”
Geisman is normally a 75-percent free-throw shooter.
“I felt confident. I definitely put the work in on my free throws,” Geissman said. “That’s a major part of my game.”
Mansfield Christian (8-15) nearly forced a fourth overtime. Trailing 60-57, Logan Cyphers potential game-tying trey was off the mark.
Buckeye Central’s Damian Dean was whistled for his fifth foul in the ensuing scramble for the ball and Mansfield Christian senior Zach Yoho hit the first of two free throws with 1 second remaining.
After MCS called a timeout, Yoho missed the second free throw intentionally and Jace Craner somehow got to the offensive rebound. His tip went in-and-out as time expired.
“What we told them (in the timeout) was we’ve got to miss and it’s got to hit the rim,” Mansfield Christian coach Cary Craner said. “We’ve got a play where we try to run in something like that. It worked and we got a last-second shot. We just couldn’t get it to fall.”
Kanney and Brady Kershner led the Bucks with 15 points apiece. Tyler Rose added 13 while Tyler Sanderson had seven despite injuring his ankle during regulation.
“We have a lot of guys who contribute,” Howell said. “If we can take care of the basketball I think we’re hard to guard.”
Freshman point guard Amaar Davis led MCS with 16 points. Cyphers added 13, while Yoho had 10 and Craner chipped in with eight.
“We’ve been preaching all year that we’ve got to have more guys score regularly,” Craner said. “We might have run out of gas a little bit because we don’t go real deep. They spread the ball around and we got everybody involved.
“It’s like I told them in the locker room, you can’t hang your head after this one. They left everything on the floor.”