Payson's historic ride falls short of final four

Payson Seymour's Gage Klitz, left, and Cody Hildebrand are unable to watch as Madison poses for a team picture after winning the Class 1A Jacksonville Super-Sectional 66-60 Tuesday night at the Jacksonville Bowl. (H-W Photo/Phil Carlson)
Posted: Mar. 6, 2013 1:05 am Updated: Mar. 20, 2013 1:15 am

Herald-Whig Sports Writer

JACKSONVILLE, Ill. – Cody Hildebrand didn't want to accept the consolation prize.

That was knowing this season was historic.

As it was, he and the rest of the Payson Seymour boys basketball team had to accept the season was over.

The Indians held a two-point lead with 2 minutes, 21 seconds remaining in the third quarter Tuesday night before Madison used an 11-0 run pull away for a 66-60 win in the Class 1A Jacksonville Super-Sectional at The Jacksonville Bowl.

This was after Payson (27-5) won its first sectional title in program history.

"It means a lot to us, but I know most of us aren't satisfied," said Hildebrand, the junior guard who finished with a team-high 21 points. "I think this loss will drive us to work even harder so we can make it all the way to Peoria."

Loose balls and rebounding hurt the Indians. Madison (20-10) owned the board with a 33-22 rebounding edge as Deontay Starnes hauled in a game-high 10 rebounds to go along with nine points.

"I think they just wanted it more," Hildebrand said. "They got a lot of offensive rebounds, and we knew that coming into this game. We didn't execute that."

An offensive rebound set up one of the game's biggest baskets.

Madison grabbed an offensive board and swung the ball to Marquis Bourney, who finished with 25 points, at the ball at the top of the key. He buried a 3-pointer to put the Trojans' ahead 58-52 with 2:46 remaining. It was 14 seconds after Hildebrand had cut the lead to three points with a 3-pointer of his own.

"It came down to giving up too many offensive rebounds, 50-50 balls and missed free throws," Payson coach Brian Rea said. "I wish them the best of luck. We're just as good as a team as that, but we made some critical mistakes at the wrong time."

Bourney had a big fourth quarter, scoring 10 points and making several big baskets and free throws.

"He's been doing it for us all year, so why not now?" Madison coach Jaime Cotto-Rodriguez said. "He came a long way. He really did. He deserves it. The group deserves it. It's a hard-working group. We're not super talented. We work hard and stay together as a family."

Madison led 17-11 after the first quarter before Payson rallied in the second quarter. Using a boost from Gage Klitz, who dunked three times on designed alley oops throughout the game and finished with nine points, the Indians went ahead 33-31 at halftime.

An energetic, pro-Payson crowd also helped the Indians gain some momentum.

"I think when we picked up our defensive pressure and got steals and easy buckets we picked it up," Hildebrand said.

After halftime, both teams traded the lead, but Payson still maintained a 42-40 edge with 2:21 left in the third quarter after Jake Voss, who finished with 20 points, made a jumper. Quincy Ware, who would score six of the next eight points, tied the game at 42 with a layup.

Tayvon Porter then made a jumper with 56 seconds left in the third quarter to put Madison ahead for good. Payson cut the lead to 62-60 with 33 seconds remaining in the fourth quarter, but a turnover gave the Trojans the ball back.

Madison made its free throws to seal the win.

"We didn't exploit the middle enough," Rea said. "We started waiting on passes instead of coming to it. We didn't attack as much late when it started to get tight. We played a little tight instead of playing loose."