Not In Our House! AVC Wins

Posted: January 21, 2018 in AVC Men's Basketball

Last-Second Victory

By: Brian Golden, AV Press

LANCASTER – D’Mauria Jones couldn’t remember the last time he drilled a buzzer beater.
What a perfect time for a refresher Saturday night.  Jones took Julian Payton’s inbounds pass in the lane with 3.6 seconds left, faded the to foul line and then cold-bloodedly swished a 15-footer to the accompaniment of the final buzzer in Antelope Valley College’s thrilling 71-69 defeat of Victor Valley in Marauder Gym.

Dee Jones

A game filled with seven-point deficits climaxed with AVC fans erupting from their seats as the Marauders (13-10) remained unbeaten atop the Western State Conference East with a 3-0 record.  “I knew it was good as soon as it left my hand,” said Jones, who led AVC with 19 points and held the rebound of an AVC misfire to give the home team one more chance. “Really, I can’t remember the last time I hit one of those, because we blew everybody out at Narbonne (High).  “But I’ll remember that one.”

AVC lost 78-76 to VVC in the Mira Costa Tournament Dec. 30.  And there the Rams and Marauders were, deadlocked at 69 after Jones deadlocked on a Osi Nwachukwu misfire with the possession arrow pointing in AVC’s direction.  “We’re just two evenly matched teams, very athletic and extremely competitive,” AVC Coach John Taylor said. “The way our league is, you just cannot lose home games, and we could have very easily lost this one.

“D’ wanted that last rebound for us, and we ran that shot for him. He’s becoming a bigger and bigger leader on our team.”  Down by nine early in the second half, AVC put together an 8-0 surge on a pair of bombs Surako Follings, Jr. and a coast-to-coast one-man fast break jam by Smith for a 42-41 lead.

There were five ties in the final eight minutes before Payton, who finished with 13 points, brought rain with a three from the wing to put AVC up 65-62 with 2:37 left.
Back came the Rams to tie at 67 on Tristan Angelo’s three-ball with 36.3 seconds to play.
“You really have to hand it to Victor Valley,” Taylor said. “They lost their coach (Troy Johnson) who turned that program around the last two years, he had a heart attack right after they played us. They competed and competed and showed so much heart.”
Victor Valley (0-3, 11-8) was led by silky-shooting 6-foot-10 Zach Christian’s 18 points and nine rebounds. Janain Owens and Angelo combined to go 4-for-7 from downtown and score a combined 26 points.

Fillings and Payton to connect on 11-of-23 shots from a combined 17 points. Nwachukwu finished with 12.

bgolden@avpress.com

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