Tigers Come From Behind For OT Victory

By: Sam Farnsworth Email
By: Sam Farnsworth Email

GRAND JUNCTION - Justin Trujillo only scored two points in the game on Friday night, but those two points were the free throws that iced the Grand Junction Tigers overtime win over Smoky Hill 64-60 in the 5A State Playoffs.

Smoky Hill heaved a meaningless half court shot at the buzzer after which the Grand Junction student body rushed the court.

The early moments of the game looked dismal when Smoky Hill jumped out to a 12-0 lead. But the Tigers responded with a 10-0 run to cut the lead to two which gave the team confidence to keep working.

"Right when we went on that 10-0 run at the end of the first quarter, we knew we were going to beat this team," Trujillo said after the game.

Geoff Baldwin and Doug Brady hit back-to-back three pointers in the fourth quarter to cut the lead from nine points to three points 45-42. The Tigers then took their first lead of the game when Brady rebounded a missed free throw and Calvin Rock made a layup with 1:37 left in the game for a 48-47 lead.

Grand Junction (21-2) had a 52-49 lead with 12.6 seconds left in the game, but Smoky Hill (14-11) hit a buzzer beating three pointer to send the game to overtime.

Baldwin helped the Tigers build a five point lead in the extra period with back-to-back layups and the Tigers never trailed again.

"I live for this. These are the games you've got to love," Baldwin said. "That's a big win for us. It doesn't matter where we play, doesn't matter who we play. We're ready to come out, we're ready play."

Eight seeded Regis-Jesuit upset number one seed Poudre on Friday night 56-52 which means the Tigers will face Regis-Jesuit in the round of 16 on Wednesday, March 5.

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