DENVER (3/4/16) – The battle for most valuable player of the Basalt-Pagosa Springs 3A first-round state playoff game, just like the contest itself, not only went down to the wire, but into overtime before the Pirates and senior Briar Erskine advanced to the Sweet Sixteen with a 54-52 victory over Michael Glen and the Longhorns.
However, there is no doubt who the Most Relieved Player on the court at the end of the 4-minute overtime was: Pagosa sophomore, Ty Kimsey, who was called for traveling negating what would have been the game-winning layup with three seconds left in regulation.
Glen, a 6-6 junior on a Longhorn team that will return every player from a 17-6 squad, also had a chance to be a last-second hero as time ran out in the fourth quarter, but his driving layup from the left side banked too hard off the glass and fell out, leaving the teams tied at 46.
To force the overtime required a layup from Glen with 30 seconds left, a steal by Wade Soho on the Pirates’ in-bound throw, and a perfectly executed entry pass from Pedro Rivera to Glen whose soft floater knotted the score with four seconds left. A Hail-Mary from in-bounding sophomore Isaiah Griego found a wide open Kimsey beyond the pressing Longhorns, but he shuffled his feet, and the rare turnover by either team made the Pirates play another half-quarter to reserve their spot against number one seeded Denver School of Science and Technology (22-1) at Daddy Bruce Robinson Middle School Saturday.
Despite playing four-and-a-half quarters, that miscue by Kimsey was only the seventh turnover by the Pirates (14-8), and Basalt (17-6) committed just eight in the game. The biggest lead either team held was six when a 3-pointer by Griego put Pagosa up 38-32 with 1:40 left in the third period. An answering trey by Kyle Roberts cut the lead in half one second before the supposed final frame.
Basalt, which had reversed a five-point 14-9 first quarter Pirate lead to go up 26-21 with 2:30 to go in the half, gave back the lead as Pagosa scored the final eight points in the quarter. The teams each went ahead once in the 11-11 third period before the dramatic fourth set up the climactic overtime.
Glen, whose desperate try to tie from beyond half-court fell short as the game ended, led all scorers with 24 points. Soho tallied 8, Miles Levy and Roberts 7 apiece, and Rivera 6 for the Longhorns. Erskine, one of three Pirate seniors, finished with 20 points and was ably supported by 17 from Griego and 10 by Kimsey.
DSST 65, ROARING FORK BOYS 51
Number one against 32 in a thirty-two team tournament wouldn’t figure to be much of a match-up, but the Roaring Fork Rams (9-14) turned the home team’s gymnasium into a library in the third quarter when their sixth 3-pointer in their last eight tries found the bottom of the net slicing what had been a 17-point lead with 3:30 to go in the first half to just four, 40-36 with 2:20 remaining.
As it turned out, Jassiel Petatan’s trey, which was the fifth straight by the Rams since Gustavo Oliva started Roaring Fork’s long-distance comeback in the second quarter, turned out to be the last salvo.
The Knights turned up the defensive pressure on the Rams’ side of the court for a pair of layups and broke a press for another to go back up by 10 and Jose Sandoval’s buzzer-beating 3-pointer offset a 3-point play by Aldo Pinela for a DSST 49-39 lead into the final period.
Roaring Fork missed all seven of its 3-point attempts in the fourth quarter and the Knights kept their five starters in even when Andrew Wiggans’ steal and slam dunk pushed the lead to 20, 61-41, with three minutes remaining.
Oliva, one of four senior Longhorns led his team with 13 points, making three straight 3-pointers in the second quarter. Petatan, a junior, had 11 points and 7 boards; senior Sergio Vega added 10 points and 6 rebounds. Edgar Reyna and Conrado Dolores are the other two graduating Longhorns.
Maximo Medina led all scorers with 19, making 4-of-6 three-pointers. Sandoval added 14, and Blake Pullen 12 for DSST, which will play number 16 seed Pagosa Springs in Saturday’s Sweet 16 game.
TITANS SWEET 16 GAME TO BE BROADCAST BY KMTS
The Coal Ridge Titans (16-7) trailed after one quarter and held a one point lead over Buena Vista (13-11) going into the final period, but emerged with a 62-53 win to reach the Sweet Sixteen against host Manitou Springs (21-3) at 2:30 on Saturday. That game will be broadcast on KMTS radio and also at kmts.com online. Saturday’s winners will meet in the Great Eight next weekend at the Denver Colisseum.