Bruins rack up hoops victory
Time isn’t on the Bear River boys basketball team’s side.
The Bruins – who won their league opener, and then lost six straight – went into their home-court game against Placer with their playoff life on the line Thursday.
Bear River (7-13 overall, 2-6 Sierra Foothill League) trailed at the half, but doubled the visitors score in the third quarter to take a 57-48 win.
“Finally. We got one,” said Bruin forward Keith Marin, who finished with 11 points and a team-high 11 rebounds. “Coach (Jack McCrory) said before the game we had to win five of our last seven league games if we had any chance at the playoffs. Now we’re one step closer.”
The Hillmen (10-13, 2-6 SFL) led 36-35 with two minutes, 57 seconds left in the third when Gopal Cabrera gave the hosts a jump start.
The junior point guard drove the lane, had his shot blocked, but came up with the handle and put the ball right back up. It fell, and Bear River was ready to roll.
Cabrera finished with 13 points and two assists.
“Dylan Mitzel and Dean Wibbenhorst were on the bench with foul trouble, and it was up to Gopal, myself and Matt (Logue) to make something happen,” Marin added.
Bear River turned the ball over on its next possession, but Dillon Chaney hit one of two free throws and Tim Waechter, who came into the game with one point and one rebound, scored on a putback to give the hosts a four-point lead.
Logue, who totaled 13 points including a key fourth-quarter 3- pointer, drained a pair of free throws as Bear River ended the quarter with a 7-0 run.
Placer got to within six points in the final quarter, but Bear River’s free throw shooting – although shaky – was good enough to seal the win.
Wibbenhorst finished with 10 points and and seven rebounds. Mitzel chipped in five points and four rebounds in limited minutes.
“This win was important for us. We’ve proven we can win playing a bad game. Now, the next step is for us to win playing good basketball,” said Bruin assistant coach Steve Box.
Bear River will host Granite Bay 7:30 p.m.Wednesday.
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