A dunk is only worth two points.
But, according to Ripon Christian High coach Mark Hofman, the Will Gilbert throw-down in the first half of Wednesday's Trans-Valley League game against a scrappy Riverbank team was worth more than that.
"Will's dunk was the tipping point," he said following the Knights' 54-42 victory, in turn, clinching at least a share of the league crown.
They have a chance to win it outright in the TVL finale Friday at Ripon High.
The Indians, who are a game back, captured the earlier meeting and can grab a share of the title by beating their home town rival.
Against Riverbank, Ripon Christian (9-2 TVL, 20-6 overall) was in need of a boost early on. The Bruins (4-7, 14-12) surged out to an early lead, playing a swarming defense that forced seven first-quarter turnovers.
"It was tough to match their intensity," said Hofman, as his team managed its first score at the 3:50 mark of the opening period.
Not long after that, Gilbert ignited both his team and Senior Night home crowd with his break-away slam dunk.
The Knights recognized Jacob Van Groningen and Sean McGovern, both seniors, prior to the game.
They may have caught a glimpse of a promising future in freshman Eli Terpsma, who came off the bench to score a game-high 14 points with four rebounds and two steals.
He along with Gilbert, Jacob Van Groningen, and Braden Van Groningen were part of RC's 20-6 run in the second quarter.
Riverbank led 16-7 on Fidencio Garcia's 3 at the start of the period.
The Knights turned the tables to take a 27-22 half-time lead.
In the second half, RC was finally able to make use of its size advantage by feeding the ball inside to 6-foot-4 junior Braden Van Groningen.
"They doubled-teamed Braden," said Hofman of the Bruin defense.
Van Groningen responded by scoring eight of his 10 points in the second half. He also had nine rebounds, including five on the offensive glass.
Riverbank kept it close on baskets by Ty Luu, Anthony Leon, Bryce Martin and Andrew Palomino.
Leon's 3 in the fourth trimmed the lead, 37-33.
"That's a very well-coached team," Hofman said of the feisty Bruins.
A steal by Lukas Van Groningen, who found Gilbert on the fast-break pass for and-one basket -- he converted the three-point play to give his team a 42-33 advantage.
RC closed out the game by hitting 6 of 7 free throws and bleeding the clock in the final three minutes.
"This was a nice team win. I was happy to see our guys share the ball," Hofman said.
Gilbert chipped in with 13 points and Jacob Van Groningen had nine points, eight boards and two steals.
Leon and Contreras led Riverbank with nine points each while Palomino added eight.