By Shaleisa Daniel
What started with the Rams trailing by 10 points at halftime, proved to be an exhilarating first regional playoff game with a nail biting 80-79 win for City College at home against Sierra College on Feb. 28.
The first half of the game began with the team having difficulty pen- etrating Sierra’s defense and showing very little post presence against their opponent’s offense, with the Rams momentarily lagging by 14 points and ending the half down 10 points, 35-25.
In the second half, guards Troy Williams and Vincent Golson both made key plays to push the team ahead— with Golson answering a three-point shot from the opposing team with two threes of his own at the beginning of the half, and Wil- liams hitting a three to tie the game with 6:21 left.
The Rams took the lead by five points with five minutes remaining in the game, but a relentless Sierra College found a way back in, push- ing the game to overtime at 73-73.
Overtime was ultimately decid- ed by a series of free throws, with
Golson being fouled and sent to the line where he would make one of two free throws to tie the game.
As the clock reached 1:15 in overtime, Golson was fouled and sent to the line again, sinking both free throws and giving the Rams a one point lead.
The Rams then called for a partial timeout followed by a full timeout by Sierra with 12 seconds left in overtime. Sierra took posses- sion of the ball, but failed to make a shot as time on the clock expired.
“We just took it one possession at a time,” said Head Coach Justin Labagh after the game. “We told the guys, we’ve beat this team twice if we get up by one point we’ll win the game—and that’s how it ended”
Golson was the team’s top scorer with 23 points in a clutch perfor- mance down the stretch.
When asked what was going through his head when shooting the last free throw to win the game, Golson simply stated, “Just make the free throw. I’m a 90 percent free throw shooter in the league so I knew I was going to make it.”
The team’s next game is sched- uled at home on Mar. 4 against Merritt College (22-6), and if won, the Rams will continue on Mar. 7 against the winner of Foothill Col- lege(12-16), and San Joaquin Delta (18-9).