San Carlos notches 1st title with OT win over Bisbee

February 27, 2016 by Les Willsey, AZPreps365

San Carlos had to rally from a first-half deficit and late in regulation, but it was all worth it when they prevailed in overtime in a title-game thriller with Bisbee.

Junior John Cutter sank four free throws and fed a teammate for the go-ahead layup in overtime as San Carlos edged Bisbee, 57-53, in th Divsiion V boys championship game at Prescott Valley Event Center.

San Carlos (28-4) was playing in its first title game in school history and hit the jackpot. Cutter showed great poise to send the game to overtime by hitting the second of two free throws with five seconds left to tie the game. His first free throw was half-way down and came out, which for a moment seemed to unnerve him. He drilled the second and bought overtime.

Once in overtime, San Carlos had to wait nearly two minutes to get off its second shot of the extra frame as Bisbee (26-7) was content hold the ball for two minutes. San Carlos got a fast-break chance and Cutter made a nice pass to Wilbur Benally III for a layup to put the Braves ahead to stay, 53-51. The basket was the only one of the game for Benally and came with one minute left.

After a three-point try by Bisbee's Spencer Schuller missed, Cutter was fouled with 48 seconds left and made two free throws to extend the lead to 55-51. Schuller answered with two FTs to cut the lead back to two. The team exchanged turnovers and Bisbee ended up with a chance to tie, but Victor Valdez missed the front-end of a 1-and one and Cutter rebounded. He was fouled and hit two more free throws with 13 seconds left to close out Bisbee.

It was a harrowing finish for both teams to experience as each was on the verge of a win in regulation. in the final minute. San Carlos coach Terry Antonio breathed a sigh of relief, but was confident his team could prevail despite their youth.

"We start four sophomores and a junior," Antonio said. "We've built a trust in one another. We put in the time and the work, and got it done....

"Cutter came up big again like he did (Friday)."

Cutter scored a team-high 21 points. Fellow sophomore Al Case, bothered by foul trouble in the second quarter, rebounded in the third period to score eight points and bring San Carlos back from a 29-25 deficit. Case finished with 18 points. Leo Pechuli also scored in double figures for San Carlos with 13.

Miguel Galvez led Bisbee with a game-high 22 points. He led a late charge that brought Bisbee back from a 40-31 deficit in the third period to brieft leads in the final seconds of regulation. Schuller and Obed Cordova scored 10 points each for Bisbee .