The way it was going in the fourth quarter in this boys’ basketball showdown, it was clear the game was going to come down to a final shot – and that final shot didn’t happen until overtime.
Brady Cunningham hit a tough shot off the glass just before the buzzer of overtime to give host Pioneer a 61-60 victory over Dexter in a back-and-forth, well-played and hard fought SEC Red Division contest Tuesday night.
Dexter’s Evan Haroldson and Cal Bavineau had big fourth quarters to help push the game into overtime. Haroldson had eight points, including a triple, in the final quarter while Bavineau converted a layup with time expiring to tie the game at 55-55.
Bavineau scored five of his 17 points in overtime while Pioneer’s Elijah Klein scored four of his 17 points and Cunningham delivered the winner in the extra period for the Pioneers.
“It was a back-and-forth game and a game of runs,” said Dexter Coach Jason Rushton. “It came down to a tough shot that didn’t go our way, that’s the way it goes sometimes.
“I was happy with the way we battled back in the fourth quarter to force overtime. We’re just getting some guys back that haven’t played in a while, so some things got away from us, but guys made plays down the stretch and that was great to see.”
Pioneer led 16-15 after the first quarter and the game was tied at 26-26 at the break. Pioneer used a 16-13 run to take a 42-39 lead after three but Dexter outscored Pioneer 16-13 in the final period to tie the game at 55-55.
Will Sanok Dufallo made six three-pointers in the game and finished with a game-high 18 points for Pioneer. Klein scored in every quarter and finished with 17 points. Cunningham and Josh Turman each scored eight and Josiah Schaafsma had six points for the home team.
Bavineau also had 7 assists and 3 steals to go with his 17 points. Ty Rychener had 14 points, 5 assists and 4 rebounds. Haroldson, in his first game back from injury, had 12 points and 6 rebounds. Brennan Parachek, who also has missed time, had 10 points and 10 rebounds. Cole Arnedt added 7 points and took two charges in the game.
“We’ve had a tough stretch, but this is part of growth,” Rushton said. “With some guys back in and with our effort in practice, we’ll work to get things in rhythm again.”