STOCKTON – Trailing by 19 points at halftime, Sierra mounted a furious comeback against Edison but came up a point short as the Vikings won the championship game of the 3rd Annual Adidas Trojan Classic 50-49 Wednesday at Lincoln High.
It’s the second time the Vikings held off Sierra for a win. On Dec. 11, they won 52-48 during their McDonald’s Classic contest.
“I like the way we came back,” Timberwolves coach Scott Thomason said. “We just kept chipping away.
“We missed some layups down the stretch along with free throws and we and turned the ball over late.”
Jess Spivey hit two baskets in 30 seconds on assists from Daniel Wyatt to draw Sierra (8-3) within 49-47 with 19.5 seconds remaining. The Timberwolves got one more look but the best they could do is a tip-in by Bikram Thiara, only with less than five seconds remaining and no timeouts left Sierra could not stop the clock and Edison (6-5) did not have to inbound the ball.
“We knew they were going to come out fired up after halftime and they were going to go on a run,” Vikings coach Matt Atad said. “We just wanted to sustain and maintain.”
Edison had only had three field goals in the second half.
“We were trying to run different stuff to get our guys going in the second half,” Atad said. “But they came out and played solid defense.”
After being outscored 20-3 in the second quarter, the Timberwolves came back with a 17-5 run in the third quarter.
“We just played terrible basketball in the second quarter when we were outscored 20-3,”
Thomason said. “We knew about their quickness and we wanted to keep guys in front of us but we couldn’t keep them in front of us in the first half.
“They were going around us – we were too late to help.”
One of the reasons for the third-quarter Sierra comeback was the defensive play of Victor Elijah who drew three charging calls and made a steal in the third period.
“I did what I could to get those charges,” Elijah said. “I just wanted get to the right place at the right time to help the team out.”
Wyatt (15 points) and Spivey (nine points) were named to the all-tournament team.
“We knew that they jumped on us and we didn’t deliver the first blow like we want to every game,” Wyatt said. “So we knew we had to make a comeback in the second half.
“We did that, but it wasn’t enough.”
Adonnis McMurtry led the Vikings with 13 points and Shaqur Vanhook added 12 points.