No. 4 Weston Ranch continued its assault on the Division II NorCal regional playoffs Thursday, never trailing in a 63-50 quarterfinal win over fifth-seeded Oakland Tech in quarterfinal action.
And as they have all year, the Cougars won with a balanced attack behind Mi’son Coilton, Donjaé Lindsey and Gavin Wilburn.
“Versatility is the biggest thing in basketball,” Weston Ranch coach Chris Teevan said. “And Mi’son, Donjaé and Gavin can all step up at any time for us.”
With the Cougars (22-12) in foul trouble most of the night, Teevan pulled players near the end of the first three quarters and the Bulldogs (27-5) took advantage each time, scoring four quick points at the end of the first quarter, ending the second quarter on a 6-0 run and the third on an 8-0 run, coming to within 44-39.
“Foul trouble really stretched us at times,” Teevan said.
Weston Ranch slammed the door in a hurry on the last Oakland Tech run with Lindsey taking a pass from Wilburn and burying a 3-pointer to start the final period and after drawing a charge, Coilton made a steal and went coast to coast to get the Cougars back up to 10 at 49-39.
Lindsey scored seven of his eight points in the fourth quarter.
“We were very fast and kept up the pressure,” Lindsey said. “And we have a lot of people who can score.”
Coilton (11 points, eight rebounds, four assists, three steals) helped cap a 6-0 run when he took the shot clock down to near zero and dished out to a wide-open Favor Pitts (nine points behind three 3-pointers) in the corner who hit his final 3-pointer with 3:25 remaining in the game to take the wind out of Oakland Tech’s sails and make the score 55-41.
“We knew they were fast,” Coilton said. “But we wanted to make them play our game at our speed.
“On that charge, I saw him coming out of control, and nothing helps us out more than to have them come away with nothing on a fast break.”
Following a resounding dunk by Lindsey, Wilburn (game-high 18 points, nine rebounds, four assists, three blocks, two steals) made a block-rebound combination and a pair of free throws to give the Cougars their biggest lead at 61-44 with 1:56 left.
“The refs let us play,” Wilburn said. “We kept hustling and playing through the physical nature of the game and we executed from the opening tip.”
Weston Ranch hammered Oakland Tech on the boards 40-25 and was led by Jordahn Johnson with 12 rebounds. Robel Zemmo led the Bulldogs with 11 points.
The Cougars host No. 9 St. Mary’s of Stockton on Saturday at 6 p.m. in a regional semifinal.
“At this point, it doesn’t matter who we play because everyone left is good,” Teevan said.