By Carlos Ferrand
The Victoria Pirates 102-93 victory over the Southwest Texas Junior Cowboys couldn’t be decided in regulation time April 6 at McDermott Convocation Center at Incarnate Word.
The winner faced St. Philip’s in the championship game.
The Cowboys commanded the game early, forcing the Pirates into bad shot selections and blocking almost everything in the paint.
With strong play on the defensive side of the court, Cowboys guard Kejuan Presberry’s offense helped the Cowboys grow its lead.
Presberry scored 16 points in the first half and finished with 23 points.
With 5 minutes remaining in the first half, Victoria starting hitting shots from beyond the 3-point arc.
Pirates guard Xavier Callis sank a 3-pointer from behind the arc and started an 11-3 rally that would prove to be the turning point in the game. Callis scored 30 points in the game.
By halftime, the Cowboys only led 43-40.
The next 20 minutes played out like two sluggers going punch for punch. Callis would sink a 17-foot shot, and Thomas would answer by dunking over defenders.
The Cowboys stayed within 8 points before making a run to try to pull ahead in the final 2 minutes. With less than 20 seconds to play, the Cowboys found themselves down 84-82.
With precious seconds ticking away, Mayen drove to the basket, drawing a shooting foul with only a few seconds on the clock.
Mayen sank both free throws to tie and send the game into overtime.
The Cowboys’ effort to pull even with the Pirates seemed to take all the gas they had left.
Victoria outscored Southwest Texas Junior in overtime 18-9 and walked off the court victorious.
“We practice five days a week. So we think that at the end of the game, we are going to have more gas in the tank,” Anderson said. “Today we did.”