Collins had beaten St. Patrick both times in the regular season, once by 30 points [59-29] and the second time by 10 points [60-50]. St. Patrick made sure it did not happen a third time.
With six seconds remaining on the clock, junior Fighting Irish forward Drew Roth found just enough space to launch a three to break the 56-56 tie and send St. Patrick to the Region 8-2A District Championship with a 59-56 victory.
Colins lead the way after the first period 8-7 as senior Jason Thompson led the way with five points that included a field goal and two made foul attempts.
St. Patrick took a quick 9-8 lead as Robert VanHorn hit a field goal attempt, however, Collins went on a 6-0 run to regain the lead. Both teams swapped the lead back and forth until the Fighting Irish went on a 10-3 run to end the period, giving them a 25-19 lead as both teams went to their respective locker rooms.
Out of the halftime break, junior guard Emmanuel Posey caught fire for a couple of three-point shots and a field goal, putting the Tigers back in the thick of things, 31-30. A 13-5 run that included buckets from DaDa Magee and Xzavian Weathersby saw Collins take 44-39 into the final period.
Collins held the lead until 2:45 left in regulation as Roth connected on a field goal. The Tigers and Fighting Irish swapped the lead five times in the final 180 seconds of action. With under 10 seconds to play, Thompson drove to the basket to tie things up 56-56, but Roth had the last word with his three-point shot to give the Fighting Irish the 59-56 win.
St. Patrick will square off with North Forrest tomorrow at 8:30 p.m. while Collins will play East Marion at 5:30 p.m. in the consolation game.