Before the opening tip-off of a PIAA Class AAAA state quarterfinal against Pennsbury, Roman Catholic's Tony Carr stepped to the free-throw line and converted the first of two attempts.

The foul shots came courtesy of the technical foul that Pennsbury, designated as the host squad, was assessed for showing up at Norristown with only its orange-colored road jerseys.

As it turned out, only one point separated the squads Saturday afternoon. Roman, with Carr sinking one of two free throws after being fouled on a left-side drive with 3.1 seconds to go, sealed its first trip to the state semifinals with a 58-57 triumph.

With PIAA executive director Robert Lombardi and assistant executive director Pat Gebhart in attendance, a District 11 officiating crew made the call to hit the Falcons with the pregame technical.

"Whatever the reason, we didn't get the information," Pennsbury coach Bill Coleman said of its home-team status. "Those are the rules. You have to follow them."

Roman coach Chris McNesby said he would have been fine if the rule had not being enforced and the game had started on an even footing.

"Why penalize the kids?" he said. "What did the kids have to do with that? And then the game comes down to one point. It's a shame."

The Falcons hurt their chance for an upset win by shooting 4 for 10 from the line in the second half.

Next for the Cahillites (27-2) is a semifinal Tuesday night against Lancaster's J.P. McCaskey at a neutral site and time to be announced Sunday. McCaskey ousted La Salle, 60-59, Saturday at Spring-Ford.

Carr, a junior point guard and Division I prospect, led the way against Pennsbury (25-7) with 19 points, five assists, and five rebounds. He went 7 for 11 from the line.

A balanced attack also featured Nazeer Bostick (11 points, two steals), D'Andre Vilmar (10 points, six boards), Gemil Holbrook (nine points, seven boards), and sixth man Manny Taylor (nine points, nine boards).

Roman trailed, 50-46, with 51/2 minutes remaining. "Our guys just keep playing," McNesby said. "As long as there's a possession or two and there's time, they're going to hang in there."

Pennsbury's Big Three - guards Cameron Jones and Mekhi Bryant and 6-foot-8 center Derrick Woods - combined for 49 points. Jones drilled five of the team's 12 three-pointers and dished nine assists.

Roman Catholic 16 9 15 18 - 58

Pennsbury 13 10 23 11 - 57

RC: Tony Carr 19, D'Andre Vilmar 10, Nazeer Bostick 11, Gemil Holbrook 9, Manny Taylor 9.

P: Mekhi Bryant 14, Cameron Jones 18, Derrick Woods 17, Nick Cereby 3, Rob Daly 5.

@ozoneinq