Kearny sophomore guard Takoda Browne drives against Madison's Mason Pennock. Browne finished with 13 points for the Komets.
Ahead three points, Kearny put the game in Takoda Browne’s hands.
The sophomore guard, who sparked a second-half scoring binge to erase Madison’s seven-point, halftime cushion, launched a 3-point attempt with three seconds remaining on the shot clock.
Then the whistle blew, sending Browne to the line for three free throw attempts with 35 seconds left in the final period.
“That wasn’t necessarily how we drew up that possession,” said Kearny coach Carl Bronson. “But I trusted (Takoda) would make the right decision with the basketball.”
Calmly, Browne drained each free throw, sealing a 47-39 home victory over Central League rival Madison on Friday night.
““I’ve been in this situation before,” Browne said. “You just have to block out everything and shoot the ball.”
Browne finished with 13 points, 11 of them in the second half for the Komets.
“We’re a third-quarter team,” said Kearny’s David Moa.
Down seven, the Komets roared back with a 16-5 run behind two 3-pointers from Browne and took a 36-30 lead at the 4:27 mark in the final period thanks to a pair of free throws by Moa.
“In the second half, we stayed in front of their shooters and scorers and tried to force them into tougher looks,” Moa said.
“On offense, we attacked more inside and scored some baskets in the paint that gave us life.”
At the 1:44 mark, Kearny stole a pass and Robby Robinson hit a jumper to put the Komets ahead 40-38. The freshman forward hit another basket that allowed Kearny to inch ahead by four points.
Madison (10-8), which converted three field goals in the second half, never recovered.
“Not one of us doubted,” Browne said.
“We came out in the second half, pressured and got back to playing Kearny basketball.”