Thirty-two minutes was not enough to decide the South Coast League opener between #8 Tesoro and #13 Capistrano Valley on Wednesday night, as the Titans rallied late to force OT but the Cougars came away with a thrilling 62-60 win. It was a back and forth 1st quarter as Tesoro’s Carson Brown hit a contested 3 at the buzzer to tie it at 13. Brown scored 11 points in the 1st quarter and showed his versatility by scoring from the perimeter, mid-range and out of the post. Capo Valley would take an 18-17 lead with 4:30 left in the half on Jalen Conastantino’s floater from the middle of the paint. Efe Gucoglu would assert himself late in the half for the Cougars, hitting three 3’s in a row, to give Capo Valley a 29-24 lead heading into the locker room.
Capo Valley stretched their lead to 43-33 with 2:16 left in the 3rd after Gray’s 4th 3 of the game off the kick from Jalen Constantino. Gray scored 10 points in the quarter to give the Cougars a 43-35 lead at the end of 3. Tesoro would open the 4th on a 9-2 run, cutting Capo Valley’s lead to 43-42 after Carson Brown hit a contested 3 on an iso pull up off a baseline inbounds. Trailing 52-50 with 3 seconds left, Tesoro was fouled on a 3 off a sideline inbounds and made 2 of 3 to tie the game with .4 seconds. The Cougars would take a time out and were issued a technical after having no timeouts left. Tesoro would miss both free throws and the game would go to OT, where Capo Valley would come away with the win and improve to 13-4 on the season.
Leading Scorers and Player Evaluations
Efe Gucoglu (22): Can shoot it with the best of them and tough, contested shots. Exceptional mid-range game and can get to the rim & finish.
Jackson Gray (21): Shooter w/ a quick release & can shoot off movement. Nice mid-range game.
Jalen Constantino (10): Strong, shifty guard who possesses superior ball handling & is a tough defender
Carson Brown (30): Scores on all 3 levels, creates his own shot and is strong to his off-hand. A powerful player who impacts the game in all facets, can score out of the post and is an active rebounder.