Maybe they should be called the Magicians — Homegrown may have another name for the Albuquerque Bombers.
In perhaps the biggest upset of the season, the Bombers (3-7 overall, 3-1 in Division 1 play) detonated Homegrown (8-2, 3-1), 82-80, in double overtime to highlight Week 10 action in the Los Lunas Men’s Basketball Association on Sunday.
After playing a solid offensive first half, the Bombers raised eyebrows and led heavily-favored Homegrown, 34-28, at the half. Things changed dramatically after the intermission.
Homegrown rallied and finally got its offense into high gear. Jose Bibian and Dave Griego keyed a second-half rally for the purple-clad defending “A” champions.
The Bombers, who felt Homegrown’s defensive pressure intensify, trailed 60-55 with 9.3 seconds left in regulation. A Homegrown comeback victory appeared in the cards.
But in a blur, the Bombers’ Andy Flishman hit a long 3-pointer and Jason Arceneaux got a steal off an inbound pass and made a tying basket as the buzzer sounded, forcing overtime, tied at 60.
Both teams traded baskets in the first overtime period. The Bombers benefited with a pair of technical-foul free throws when Homegrown’s Jason Caldwell was ejected with 1:20 left.
Landon Banks, the bombers’ post, hit three big baskets underneath in the first overtime session. Homegrown got a pair of 3s from Eloy Medina and Margarito Amaya and six points from Dave Griego to answer the Bombers’ challenge. The deadlock remained at 74-74 as the second overtime period began.
With the Bombers leading 82-80 and time running out, Homegrown frantically kept the ball in play underneath its own basket. Jose Bibian made what he and his teammates thought was a game-tying layup. But referee Steve Gallegos waived Bibian’s basket off, saying the buzzer had sounded before the shot left Bibian’s hand.
Arceneaux and Banks sparked the Bombers with 25 and 22 points respectively. Levon Davis added 13 points, and Flishman contributed 11 for the winners.
Bibian and Griego paced Homegrown with 22 and 21 points. Amaya followed with 15 markers and Caldwell chipped in with 10.
Both Homegrown losses this season have been overtime affairs. The upstart Bombers, despite their overall losing ledger, are tied with Homegrown and No Doubt with 3-1 divisional marks.
Douglas Construction 69
Jay Lewis was in the right place at the right time, getting a game-winning, buzzer-beating basket to give Douglas Construction (9-1, 4-0 in Division 2) a thrilling victory over hard-luck Al’s Mini-Mart/Husky Drilling/Sunrise Builders (6-4, 2-2).
Douglas led, 42-33, at halftime, but, behind the scoring duo of Malik Waters and Evan Grain, Al’s rallied and grabbed a 69-67 lead with 7.3 seconds remaining.
As Douglas pushed the ball up-court, Grain stuffed Wally Salata’s attempted shot, but Lewis got a pass from Jason Steingraber and hit the game-winning shot.
“It was a lot of fun,” Lewis said. “In all the years I’ve played, I never made a basket like this one.”
Lewis, a 15-year LLMBA veteran at 41, gave Douglas solid board work and scored 14 points. Salata led the winners with 23.
Waters and Grain accounted for 62 of Al’s 68 points. Waters scored a game-high 40 points and Grain added 22.
“It’s nice to win after all these years. We have the honor of being the old men of the league and have the opportunity to compete for the championship again.”
No Doubt 83
Los Lunas-Belen Ballers 58
Hot-shooting Jaime Williams fired in 33 points to give No Doubt (6-4, 3-1) its second straight win by blasting the Los Lunas-Belen Ballers (2-8, 1-3).
After a 32-32 halftime tie, No Doubt went on a 14-4 run late in the second half, pushing its lead to 75-55 as the Ballers simply wore down.
Rob Gallegos scored 12 and Jim Armijo added 10 for No Doubt to assist Williams. Leason Cherry led the Ballers with 22 points. Jeremiah Cordova added 15 points and Matt Goodson chipped in 13 in the loss.
Heritage Title Crusaders 61
ABC Mortgage 33
Eric Griego scored 28 points to lead the Heritage Title Crusaders (7-3, 2-2) to an easy win over cold-shooting ABC Mortgage (1-9, 0-4).
The Crusaders, who snapped a two-game losing streak, bolted to a 39-14 halftime advantage and coasted in the second half.
Adrian Chacon added 14 points and Dustin Romero scored 11 for Heritage. Richard Johnson was the lone man in double figures with 11 for the Mortgage men.
Lone Mountain 37
After a solid defensive first half, Lone Mountain contracting (4-6, 1-3) saw its offense fade badly, losing for the fifth time in six games against powerful Avonite (8-2, 4-0).
Avonite led 30-28 at the half, but the Mountain managed only nine second-half points on 3-pointers.
Shawn Baker, averaging 30.2 points per game, led all scorers with 31 points. Tony Valencia netted 13 markers. The win sets up a Division 2 showdown this Sunday between Avonite and Douglas Construction.
Josh Utash led Lone Mountain with 12 points. Steve Montoya followed with 11. Ironically, Lone Mountain had more 3-pointers (9) than 2-point field goals (5).
Oak Tree Inn 0 (forfeit)
Youngblood (5-5, 1-3) got a forfeit win over Oak Tree Inn (1-9, 0-4). With its third forfeit loss, Oak Tree Inn is ineligible for post-season play.