The Santa Barbara High boys basketball team was on the wrong end of a questionable call to end Friday’s round two CIF-SS Div. 2A playoff game against Hesperia, as the Scorpions escaped with a 59-58 victory in double overtime.
The Dons (19-9, 9-1 in Channel League) had the ball with 1.8 seconds left and had the length of the court to go. A full-court pass to Bryce Warrecker was broken up, as both Warrecker and a Scorpion defender were sent crashing to the floor.
The refs initially called a foul on Hesperia with 0.5 seconds remaining, though following a lengthy review the call was later overturned and assigned to the Santa Barbara big man.
The Scorpions converted one of two at the line to advance to the third round of the CIF-SS Div. 2A playoffs, where they will take on Lynwood.
Santa Barbara High coach Corey Adam did not mince words following the game.
“For the officials not to let the kids decide the game in a (second) overtime is shameful,” Adam said in an email, adding that multiple Hesperia fans and coaches later apologized.
Warrecker, who had a game-high 28 points, told the News-Press via text that the final call was a tough one that “we thought should’ve gone our way.”
“But that’s just one play out of the whole game,” he said. “Sure it might be the biggest everyone will remember, but (I know of) many other plays I could’ve been better.
“It was an awesome season and I would hate for it to be known from that one play.”
Jackson Gonzales finished with 10 points for the Dons.
It was the second time in as many games that the final play left much to be desired for the Dons’ faithful. In the final minute of Wednesday’s 67-57 win over Culver City, Gonzales was shoved into a wall by a Centaurs player.
Both teams exchanged words as the teams lined up to shake hands and parents from both sides then got involved. The gym was eventually cleared to avoid further conflict.