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No-call on final play dooms McDonald

Staff photo / Brad Emerine McDonald’s Zach Rasile dribbles around Carson Hauger of Lucas during their Division IV Canton Regional semifinal on Tuesday. The Blue Devils lost, 47-45.

CANTON — With 2 seconds left and McDonald with the ball trailing by two, the Blue Devils had a chance to advance to the Division IV Canton Regional final, but senior guard Zach Rasile was smothered by the Lucas defense.

No foul was called, time expired and McDonald found its season come to an end in a 47-45 loss.

The Cubs had an 18-4 advantage on free-throw attempts. That and the no-call on the final shot had frustrations boiling over on the Blue Devils sideline as the clock hit zero.

“Zach gets tackled on the last play shooting the 3 and there’s no call,” McDonald coach Jeff Rasile said. “He was absolutely run over shooting a 3 and there’s no call. The free throws were 18-4 for the game (in favor of) them. We couldn’t get a call the whole game, and that’s what cost us.”

Zach Rasile was pressured the from the start, and Lucas forced a slow start offensively with only two points in the first quarter for the senior.

Staff photo / Brad Emerine McDonald’s Jake Portolese, left, drives past a Lucas defender during a Division IV Canton Regional semifinal at Canton Memorial Fieldhouse on Tuesday. Portolese finished with 17 points in the Blue Devils’ loss.

The senior guard found his shot in the second, started to connect and finished with 21 points. While he was hoping for a foul on the last shot, Rasile says he can’t blame the game on it.

“We could have gotten a foul call on the last shot, but I’m not gonna blame the game on it by any means,” Zach Rasile said. “We obviously could have done a lot of things better. I could have done a lot of things better, had some more shots, but we’ve got nothing to be ashamed of. I’m proud of these guys.”

Rasile made history in the second quarter when he scored his eighth point, which gave him his 3,000th career point. He ends his career with 3,013 and is second all-time in the state of Ohio.

With all the individual successes Zach Rasile accomplished, he views them all as team accomplishments and a testament to how successful his team has been as a unit over the past four seasons.

“Obviously, that’s a big honor for me, but I think really, that’s a team accomplishment if anything,” he said. “All my teammates and coaches throughout the four years really helped me, and they really contributed to that more than anything.”

As Rasile moves on to West Liberty University, he knows the steps he needs to take to prepare for the collegiate level. It starts with a focus on strength training.

“Getting in the gym,” Zach said. “Working and lifting everyday and getting stronger. Gaining weight, getting faster, and just getting ready for the next level.”

Lucas moves on to play Richmond Heights in the Canton Regional Final on Friday. Richmond Heights took down John F. Kennedy in the first game of the doubleheader.

The Blue Devils end their season with a 22-4 record. Juniors Eli Street, Dominic Carkido and Jake Portolese, who scored 17 points in the loss, return to the roster next season.

“I think we had a great season,” Zach said. “We were 22-4, and that’s a pretty good record. We fell a bucket short of going to the regional finals. I’m proud of these guys, and I’m not ashamed of anything.”

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