The Lincoln boys’ basketball team walked into Rodriguez High School knowing it was not supposed to win, that it was beat up from Friday’s San Francisco Section loss to Mission and knowing that it was going to have to play as close to perfect to possible to win the NorCal Division I outbracket game.
And didn’t care.
Drew Bologna put his head down and drove the lane with 1 minute, 49 seconds left in overtime on his way to a three-point play that put his team up 79-78 as the Mustangs outlasted Rodriguez 89-87 in a gut-wrencher Monday night. The reward for Lincoln (25-10)? A matchup today at 7:30 p.m. against top-seeded McClymonds (29-0) at Cal State East Bay.
“We came here as underdogs,” Bologna said between hugs, “and it didn’t matter because we played our game.”
Lincoln took its first lead at 56-55 since early in the first quarter with 1 minute left in the third on a Randall Gacayan layup. The lead would change hands twice more until the Mustangs gained control at 71-69 advantage with 1:25 left in regulation. But Cameron Richmond’s driving layup tied the score 71-71 with 22 seconds remaining to force overtime.
Devis Koch (29 points, 14 rebounds) played strong throughout to keep Lincoln close, but when Deend Parker fouled out with 2:21 and the Mustangs down by four, Lincoln’s future looked bleak.
That’s when Bologna took over with his three-point play and two beautiful assists to Ricky Ohissen for layups, one off an inbounds from under his own basket to give his team a four-point cushion with 45 seconds left.
“I didn’t know what to think,” Parker said of his thoughts after he fouled out, “but I had trust and faith in Drew and Devis to perform and they did.”