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December 20, 2013

Pacifica wins a nailbiter against Santa Clara

Pacifica Tritons 56, Santa Clara Saints 51

By Dave Keefer

Tournament host Pacifica finished the game on a 10-1 run to come from behind and beat Santa Clara, 56-51, at the 11th Annual Clash On The Coast in a second round pool play game on Thursday.

Pacifica trailed virtually the entire game and could never get over the hump until it was nearly too late. But Santa Clara found itself shooting at a net with a lid on it in the 4th quarter, as the Saints could get no field goals to drop for more than the last 5 minutes of the game. And Tritons like Eddie Galvan took advantage, with clutch three-pointers and solid team defense.

Santa Clara jumped out to early leads of 5-0 and 7-2 but Pacifica managed two very brief early leads of 14-13 and 16-14. The first quarter ended with Santa Clara up, 18-16.

After three ties, Santa Clara grabbed the lead and held it the rest of the second quarter, leading at one time by nine points, 34-25, after a layin by Nathan Belanger. That culminated a 12-3 run that included a couple of jumpers from Jose Hernandez.

Elvis Agustin helped cut into the deficit with a nice dime to Deondre Vines, a steal and layup, and a three-pointer at the buzzer to make it closer, 36-32, as the half ended.

Galvan had a scoring drive and the Tritons got to within two at 38-36 with 6:55 left in the third quarter. Nobody scored for over two minutes and that's when Daniel Moraga tied the game on an assist from Agustin to make it 38-38.

Later, Santa Clara's Isaiah Nichols just beat the shot clock with a nifty three-pointer to put the Saints ahead, 41-38. But the lead would change three more times in the quarter, and Agustin scored at the buzzer to give Pacifica the lead, 45-44, heading into the 4th quarter.

Carlos Perez soon scored with some nice post work to get the lead back for Santa Clara, 46-45. He added a three-pointer with about 5:30 left in the game to make it 49-46. That turned out to be the last field goal by Santa Clara.

Nichols added a free throw to the lead at the 5:17 mark to make it 50-46 and Santa Clara would go scoreless the rest of the game until a meaningless free throw with 1 second left. Pacifica heated up just in time to take advantage, scoring the next 10 points.

Galvan nailed two straight three-pointers (at 4:00 and 3:10) and suddenly Pacifica was ahead, 52-50. It matched their largest lead of the game, back in the first quarter. With 2:10 left, Alexis Carranza got a big steal and layup to make it 54-50 and Pacifica had a two-possession lead.

Santa Clara was getting some good shots but they were all rimming out and Pacifica was rebounding well, especially Vines. Galvan hit both ends of a one and one with 8 seconds left to seal the win. Hernandez hit one last free throw for Santa Clara with 1 second left to make the final score, 56-51.

Galvan led all scorers with 14 points, 8 in the final quarter. Vines and Jerry Torres each added 10 for Pacifica. For Santa Clara, the scoring was well spread out among the five starters with Nichols and Belanger getting 12 points each, and Perez had 10.

Score by Quarters:

Pacifica---------16-16-13-11 = 56
Santa Clara---18-18-08-07 = 51

Pacifica (56):
0-Eddie Galvan 14
1-Elvis Agustin 7
3-Trey Williams 3
12-Jerry Torres 10
13-Alexis Carranza 3
15-Deondre Vines 10
22-Mike Moraga 2
24-Daniel Moraga 7

Santa Clara (51):
10/44-Isaiah Nichols 12
12-Carlos Perez 10
13-Nathan Belanger 12
23-Jose Hernandez 9
32-Brazil Sullivan 8

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