PERRYVILLE -- Perryville didn't put on an impressive performance from the free-throw line in the fourth quarter against rival St. Vincent on Saturday night.
But the Pirates made enough free throws while playing strong defense down the stretch and throughout the entire contest to hold off the Indians.
"We definitely need to practice those a little more," said Perryville senior Brent Roth, who went 2 of 4 from the free-throw line in the final period. "We have been shooting them better, but we just weren't hitting them tonight. ... There's always a little bit of nerves, but you've just got to stay calm and knock them down."
Perryville converted just 9 of 21 free throws in the fourth quarter and 14 of 28 in the game, but prevailed over St. Vincent 42-33 at the Perry Park Center.
Roth led the Pirates (9-8) with 12 points. Tyson Brown added 10 points.
Kyle Rollet led St. Vincent (9-6) with 14 points.
"I'd say it's the biggest game [of the year] just as far as bragging rights go more than anything," said Roth, who added that it's nice to play St. Vincent during the basketball season since the rival schools don't meet on the football field in the fall.
St. Vincent coach Bruce Valleroy gave credit to Perryville for playing strong man-to-man defense. Still, his team struggled scoring early.
"If you don't put the ball in the hole, you're not going to win many games," Valleroy said. "We were 4 for 22 at halftime from the field. That's what we had. How many shots did we miss around the basket again? And that kind of killed us. It's always a very physical game when you play Perryville. They played good man-to-man defense. They get up in your face."
Roth said he was not surprised that the game was so low scoring.
"Most of our games this year have been low scoring," he said. "It's pretty much a defensive-first team, so it's always pretty low."
One big key for Perryville's man-to-man defense was stopping St. Vincent senior Justin L'Hote. And the Pirates did a nice job of that as L'Hote scored just five points.
Michael Bachmann and Aaron Grebing took turns defending L'Hote.
"Mike and Aaron, they've switched out all year and they normally guard the best player every game and they did a heck of a job," Roth said.
Bachmann also said that the Pirates have been focusing their effort on defense.
"We're more of a defensive team, so we've got to work extra hard on defense," Bachmann said. "If me and Aaron can come in and shut down their best player, that really helps."
Perryville built a 6-0 lead in the first 2 minutes, 30 seconds of the contest and led 15-5 at the end of the first period.
The Pirates never allowed St. Vincent to get within seven points in the second quarter, and led 23-14 at halftime.
Things started to get interesting late in the fourth quarter. The Indians were down 34-27 with a little under 5 minutes remaining. But they went on a run to bring it within 34-31 with 2:11 left.
The Indians then brought it within 36-33 with 1:08 remaining.
But Perryville held on from that point as the Indians struggled to convert field goals in the final minute and Perryville's defense held strong.
@z_agate_no tab_no indnt_bld ld:ST. VINCENT (33) -- Justin L'Hote 5, Kyle Rollet 14, Aaron Dzik 7, Matt Hotop 2, Dylan Geringer 2, Shawn Renner 3. FG 13, FT 4-9, F 17. (3-pointers: L'Hote 1, Dzik 1, Renner 1)
PERRYVILLE (42) -- Andrew Martin 7, Ben Prevallet 5, Brent Roth 12, Wade Leible 8, Tyson Brown 10. FG 14, FT 14-28, F 13. (3-pointers: None)