In his 25 seasons at Westerville South High School, boys basketball coach Ed Calo has witnessed several wild finishes.

In his 25 seasons at Westerville South High School, boys basketball coach Ed Calo has witnessed several wild finishes.

Calo added another to that list Feb. 17 at South.

Stephen O'Daniel hit a 3-pointer as time expired to send the Wildcats to a 58-57 win over Olentangy Liberty.

The win avenged a 55-54 overtime loss to Liberty on Jan. 13 and gave the Wildcats momentum heading into the Division I district tournament.

"We've hit some buzzer-beaters before against some pretty good teams, but the fact that we had such a rough one there, losing in overtime, thinking that we should have won that one and then taking this away, I'm sure they're thinking they should have won this one," Calo said. "That made it nice."

South is seeded eighth and will play 36th-seeded Teays Valley in the first round Friday, Feb. 24, at Jonathan Alder.

The winner will play 24th-seeded Westerville Central or 34th-seeded Logan in the second round Wednesday, Feb. 29, at Jonathan Alder.

Against the Patriots, who already had clinched the OCC-Cardinal Division title, South needed to rally from a 13-point deficit in the fourth quarter just to set up the exciting finish.

South trailed for most of the game, including 46-33 after three quarters.

Isiah Rogers' two free throws cut the deficit to 57-54 with 1 minute, 54 seconds remaining. After Liberty's Jake Bischoff missed the front end of a 1-and-1 for the second time, Rogers and O'Dan-iel teamed for the winning basket.

O'Daniel was fouled with 4.8 seconds remaining and after making the first free throw, he intentionally missed the second. Rogers dived to the floor, pulled the ball away from Liberty's Tyler Welch and flipped a pass over his head to O'Daniel, who hit the 3-pointer from the right wing, setting off a wild celebration.

"This is a big game, especially going into the tournament," O'Daniel said. "This is a big advantage, and we have a chance to see them in the tournament. This is a big confidence-builder."

Rogers finished with 17 points, O'Dan-iel scored 14 and Marcus Ball scored 13.

South improved to 16-4 overall and tied Westerville North for second in the league at 11-3 behind Liberty (12-2).

Liberty dropped to 18-2 overall after losing for the second consecutive week at the buzzer to a Westerville program. Westerville Central's Christian Graves hit a 3-pointer as time expired to beat the Patriots 49-46 on Feb. 10 at Liberty.

The Patriots are seeded third in the district tournament behind Northland and Walnut Ridge.

South did not play Teays Valley during the regular season. The Vikings, who compete in the MSL-Buckeye Division, improved to 6-14 overall after beating Hamilton Township 56-32 on Feb. 17.

Key players include Asa Featherstone, Grant Gilliland, Jamaal Glick, Colin Graves and Tyler Primmer.

South swept the regular-season series with Central, winning 70-68 on Dec. 6 at Central and 52-50 on Jan. 20 at home.

The Warhawks enter the tournament 10-10 overall. Along with Graves, a senior, key players are seniors Jared Edens, Max Shawver and Tre Stennett.

The Wildcats also did not play Logan during the regular season. The Chieftains, who play in the Southeastern Ohio Athletic League, are 7-13 overall.

Seniors Luke Miller and Ronnie Webb, and juniors Gaven Jourdan and Tristan Myers are the team's top players.

"We have a lot of work in front of us," Calo said. "We have to take care of our business. It's right in front of us. The district is going to be very good, but you just have to go play and win."

•The girls team closed the season by losing five of six and finished 10-11 overall after losing to Hilliard Davidson 51-38 in the opening round of the Division I district tournament Feb. 16 at Pickerington Central.

Davidson led 15-4 after one quarter and 27-9 at the half before South went on a 22-6 run in the third quarter to close within 33-31 heading into the final quarter. Senior Erica Aiello led South with 13 points.

"They battled," South coach Silas Williams said of his team. "Their character really showed in that third quarter how bad they wanted it. We started out just a little bit too slow."

The Wildcats finished 8-6 in OCC-Cardinal play to tie Dublin Jerome for fourth behind Olentangy (14-0), Dublin Scioto (11-3) and Westerville North (9-5) and ahead of Olentangy Liberty (5-9), Marysville (2-12) and Westerville Central (0-14).

The Wildcats won both games with Central 76-16 on Dec. 5 and 48-20 on Jan. 21, and split two games with North, winning 41-33 on Jan. 4 and losing 62-39 on Feb. 8.

South will lose four seniors to graduation, including its two top scorers, Morgan Neighbors (12.7) and Aiello (8.4). Neighbors was first-team all-league, Aiello was second team and freshman Chanelle Moore was honorable mention. Senior Rylee Holman was the team's scholar athlete.

Lindsay Gerhart is the other senior.

"My first year here they were all freshmen, so this is my first group to actually graduate with," Williams said of the seniors. "It is tough. They played their hearts out, so you can never lose in that respect in what they gained and what they gave."