Nathan Mollat/Daily Journal
Mills’ Marquis Adkins looks for room to maneuver during the Vikings’ 53-48 win over Half Moon Bay in a PAL Tournament semifinal game Friday night at Capuchino.
The Mills boys’ basketball team converted on 7 of 8 free throws and then played lock-down defense to upset Half Moon Bay 53-48 in overtime in a semifinal game at the Peninsula Athletic League Tournament at Capuchino High Friday night.
Robert Noland, who scored a team-high 12 points, was 4 of 4 from the line, with Daniel Yu knocking down a pair and Tyler Wright hitting 1 of 2 from the free throw line in overtime, outscoring Half Moon Bay 8-2 in the extra period. The Vikings then limited the Cougars to just a layup to move into the championship game against Burlingame, which beat Aragon 66-51 in the other semifinal.
The championship game is slated for a 7:45 tip at Capuchino Saturday night.
Mills led for most of the game, forcing Half Moon Bay to rally in the fourth quarter to force overtime. The Vikings led 10-8 after one quarter of play and 25-22 at half. Half Moon Bay tied the score at 35 heading into the fourth quarter and then rallied from a five-point deficit over the final eight minutes to force overtime. The Cougars had a chance to win it in regulation, but center Rico Nuño’s desperation 3-point attempt at the buzzer fell short.
In addition to Noland’s 12 points, Marquez Bura and Wright added 10 points apiece. Wright also had four blocks.
Half Moon Bay was led by Rico Nuño, who scored a game-high 21 points. Shooting guard Corey Cilia added 17, but they were the only two to score in double digits for the Cougars.
Half Moon Bay started well, with Cilia draining a 3 to open the game and added a steal and a layup to put the Cougars up 5-2 early. Mills responded with a 3 from Bura to tie the score at 5 and closed the quarter with a 5-3 run to hold a two-point lead after eight minutes.
The teams traded baskets in the second quarter and when Mike McWhirter hit a bucket for the Vikings, they led 25-18 with 1:35 left in the half. But Half Moon Bay’s Brody Menzies hit a pair of baskets to close the Cougars’ deficit to three at the half.
The third quarter was much like the second, with the teams trading buckets. Tommy Nuño’s putback with 3:04 left in the third tied the score at 32 for Half Moon Bay, but Mills’ Jeremy Gibbs drained a 3 to put the Vikings back on top, 35-32. Rico Nuño responded with three straight points to tie the game at 35 going into the final eight minutes.
Mills quickly regained the lead with Noland driving the lane and getting a shot to go down over Rico Nuño. Bura then nailed a 3 to put Mills up 40-35. The Cougars responded with a 3 from Cilia, who then stole the ball and went in for a layup to tie the score again, this time at 40.
Gibbs’ third 3 of the game with 2:35 left in regulation put Mills up 44-42, but Rico Nuño tied it a 44. He then put the Cougars ahead, 46-44, with 1:42 left in regulation, but Bura tied it at 46 with 1:23 to go.
The Cougars misfired on a shot that would have given them the lead with less than a minute to play, but with Mills trying to set up one final play, Cilia stole the ball from Noland. The two chased after the ball, crashing into each other along the sideline, with the referees ruling Half Moon Bay when it went out of bounds with 26 seconds left.
The Cougars could not take advantage, however, and the game went into overtime, with the Vikings prevailing.
Burlingame 66, Aragon 51
There was no question Ferrari was going to factor into the Panthers’ win, but it may not be the Ferrari with which most are familiar.
Vinny Ferrari, a sophomore and younger brother of senior star Frankie Ferrari, came in and did an admirable job guarding Aragon points guard Alex Manu.
“When we put him (Vinny Ferrari) on Manu, it took him out of his game a little bit,” said Burlingame coach Pete Harames.
After Frankie Ferrari picked up two first-quarter fouls while guarding Manu, Harames went to the younger Ferrari to shadow Manu. He still finished with a team-high 21 points, but he certainly had to work a lot harder to get them.
That allowed Frankie Ferrari to concentrate more on running the Burlingame offense, while also finding his scoring rhythm. He finished with 21 points, seven rebounds and seven assists.
Aragon had no answer for Burlingame’s 6-7 post Nick Loew, who scored a game-high 22 points and pulled down 13 rebounds.
The third member of Burlingame’s “Big Three,” Justin Gutang, also had a strong game. He scored 13 points with 11 coming in the first half.
“He came out ready to play tonight,” Harames said.
Aragon was at a definite disadvantage without the services of shooting guard Toby Liebergesell, who sat out the game with an illness.
“We just didn’t have the firepower today,” said Aragon coach Sam Manu. “Not having Toby hurt us. We didn’t match up very well.”
Aragon kept the game close in the first quarter, trailing 21-19. In the second quarter, Burlingame turned up the pressure defensively, holding the Dons to just six points while scoring 19 of its own to take a 15-point lead at halftime, 40-25.
Aragon got as close as 47-35 in the third quarter following an Alex Manu three-point play, followed by a steal and layup with 2:38 to play in the quarter, but the Panthers ended the quarter on a 7-0 run to push their lead to 19, 54-35, going into the final quarter.
The Dons outscored Burlingame 18-12 over the final eight minutes, but it came mostly against the Panthers’ reserves.
Despite the relatively easy win, Harames believes his team can do more.
“I don’t think we played our best,” Harames said.