It is often said that basketball is a game of runs.
While there were several runs in Wednesday's Section 5 Class A2 semifinals at the Blue Cross Arena, Batavia's last was the biggest as the Blue Devils won a thrilling 60-57 game over Geneva.
"Coach called a timeout and called a great play, and I hit a 3," said Andrew Hoy, who scored a game-high 27 points. "It is all about runs. Junior Collins doesn't normally shoot like that, even though he's a great player. He banged in two 3-pointers to put them up. We knew we would make our shots."
The second Panther run - and biggest - came after the team had fell behind 14 points midway through the third quarter.
Joe Schlossel scored to put the Blue Devils up 39-25 but Hoy went to the bench with foul trouble.
Geneva ripped off eight consecutive points with Batavia's top gun on the bench.
The Blue Devils held on to a lead, but the Panthers had five straight points at the end of the third quarter and tied the game at 45.
Geneva took a 53-49 lead when Collins hit a pair and Mickel Soloman hit one 3-pointer over a minute stretch.
"They were shell-shocked when Geneva had that big run," Batavia coach Buddy Brasky said. "I told them basketball was a game of runs and we had to answer."
Batavia answered right back with Andrew hitting a 3, Marcus Hoy dropping one in and Andrew hitting another in just over a minute. The Blue Devils had recaptured the lead, 58-53, with just two minutes left in the game.
"It helps a lot that I was here last year," Andrew Hoy said. "At one point I was like 0-for-10 last year, I didn't even hit the rim. It was good to get that experience last year."
Geneva cut the deficit to 58-56 when Darnell McDuffy scored and had an and-1, then stole the inbounds pass and missed the shot.
Andrew hit two free throws before Shamar Bridges hit a free throw in the closing seconds for Geneva. The Panthers had a look in the closing seconds but Collins missed the trey.
Batavia (19-3) will play Freddie Thomas in the finals on Saturday at 2 p.m.
"Freddie Thomas is as good as anybody in A1 or A2," Brasky said. "They have the fifth leading scorer in all of Section 5. It's a whole different ballgame for them. We'll watch film and get ready for Saturday."