MANLIUS - Less than a month ago, the Bureau Valley Storm were on the verge of winning a game at Red Devil Gym when a buzzer-beating shot won it for Hall.
Things like that you're supposed to move on from, but this is Bureau Valley (14-9, 2-5) and Hall (17-4, 6-2) we're talking about, so you can't blame the Storm in wanting their chance at payback.
They got it when the Red Devils came to call at the Storm Cellar Friday night, with BV taking advantage of Hall's cold shooting in the first half and a rally in the second half to win 67-52.
"It was kind of a revenge for us because of the way we lost was just a tough one to swallow," BV senior Tyler Gustafson said. "So, we really worked hard in practices. This game was huge for us, kind of a turning point, I hope, for the rest of the season."
Of Gustafson's team leading 22 points (including four 3-pointers), 14 were in the first half to help the Storm take leads of 20-10 in the first period and 31-19 at the half.
Three other Storm players finished in double figures for the night, including Kale Barnett (14), Noah Johnson (11), and Nate Paup (10).
"I told the kids that this confirms what the locker room has known all along," BV coach Jason Marquis said. "We have the talent to be a very good team, but aside from a few nights or quarters here and there, we haven't played our best basketball.
"It took a while for us to get together, injuries are a part of that, chemistry is another part of that. We're the same team, we just played better tonight."
For the Red Devils, it was left to Jimmy DeAngelo to carry the water early, scoring 13 of Hall's 19 first half points (out of his own game total of 20) while the shots just weren't falling for the rest of his team.
"Trez (Rybarczyk, 10 points), Chance (Resetich, 9 points), and James (Mautino) combined for one point in the first half," Hall coach Mike Filppini said. "At least two of them are always hitting shots, but we weren't shooting the ball very well, only 29 percent in the first half, so that didn't help."
Still, Filippini used halftime to help refocus his team.
"We didn't go in there and throw stuff or yell at 'em," he said. "We just told them they had to play harder, better, and smarter than what they did."
Hall indeed came out of halftime more intensely, but for every points run they started, the Storm were able to answer back to keep the gap wide 45-32 at the end of the third period.
The Red Devils got as close as 50-42 in the mid-fourth period, but 8-12 free throw shooting by Barnett, Johnson, and Gustafson helped keep Hall comfortably at a distance.
"I was actually happier with the second half, we played harder," Filippini said. "But when you're down 10 or 12 to Bureau Valley in the fourth quarter, you've got to make every single shot to get back into the game.
"That was a good old-fashioned butt-kicking, right there," he continued. "Hopefully for us it's a good thing, we'll get our heads back on straight and get ready to play tomorrow (at Princeton)."
The Storm stay home Saturday to host Erie-Prophetstown in a make-up game, so the celebration of this victory will be a short one.
"Tonight was a sign of us taking a step forward," Marquis said. "But don't exaggerate it. It's one game, four quarters, against a very good team. We need to step on the floor tomorrow night and get better."