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Les Willsey

Staff Writer,

Red Mountain boys top Hamilton with threes, strong overtime

Jan 4, 2013

The threes and the ones. Both were instrumental in the outcome of Friday night's Red Mountain-Hamilton boys basketball game.

Red Mountain's Derek Rojas drilled his team's 10th three-pointer of the game to open overtime and the Mountain Lions went on for a 61-53 triumph at Hamilton High.

Rojas, a 5-foot-11 senior, popped a shot from the right baseline with 3:36 left in overtime for a 50-47 lead and start a 5-0 run that kept his team in the lead the entire extra period. Rojas was one of three Red Mountain players to score in double figures. The others were guard Andy Sessions (16 points) and Travis Meeker (14 points). Sessions made four threes, Rojas three, Meeker two and Garrett Meyers one. Red Mountain (13-6, 6-4 power-ranking games) protected its advantage by making 9-of-12 free throws in overtime and 15 of 22 for the game.

"Derek's shot was big and in a four-minute game puts pressure on the other team," Red Mountain coach Gerg Sessions said. "I thought Travis did a good job on (Hamilton's James) Sosinski, and we did a good job of taking care of the basketball in overtime."

Free throws were the main culprit for Hamilton in the loss. The Huskies made only 3-of-18 -- any coach's nightmare. Hamilton (11-5, 7-2 power-ranking games), which isn't a three-point shooting team, made only two threes making a comeback in OT difficult once the Mountain Lions took command.

Red Mountain put together a solid overtime in all phases after scoring in single digits in each of the second, third and fourth quarters The Mountain Lions struggled shooting in the final three quarters (making just 8 of 34 attempts). That shooting followed a prolific opening quarter that Red Mountain led, 22-15, thanks to 50 percen shooting and five 3s.

Hamilton hung around in regulation without having any player develop a hot hand. Nine Huskies scored in the first half -- none of them had more than four points. Junior Luke McCook finished with a team-high 13 points for Hamilton, scoring 11 in the second half and overtime. Sosinski added 11 points. 

Hamilton trailed pretty much the entire second half, but did take the a brief lead 47-45 on a three-point play by Zach Evans with 1:55 to play.Meyers tied it at 47 with a layup with 1:40 to go. Hamilton turned the ball over at the 1:05 mark and Red Mountain was able to work the clock to a final shot by Meeker from about 15 feet that was short. Hamilton got off a desperation shot at the buzzer that wasn't close.