SAN JOSE -- Yerba Buena stormed back from 17 points behind in the second half Friday night against Branham to force overtime, then pulled away in the closing minutes to win the Blossom Valley Athletic League West Valley Division championship with a 75-67 victory.

Marcus Tran scored 27 of his 31 points after halftime to lead a furious comeback that picked up steam in the fourth quarter.

"It means everything," Tran said of the championship, believed to be Yerba Buena's first in boys basketball in at least 15 years. "I can come back four years later and be like, 'My senior year, we brought back a banner.' It feels pretty good."

When it was over, the Aztec Warriors rushed the court in celebration.

Asked what turned around the game, Ricardo Rivas said, "The hard defense and not giving up. We wanted to win this."

Deep into the third quarter, it looked as if raising a banner would have to wait at least another season for the Aztec Warriors. They were 5 for 20 from the free-throw line at one point in the second half and still trailed by 13 in the final minute of the third quarter.

But Tran's 3-pointer with 6:13 left pulled Yerba Buena to within single digits, and the sharpshooter did not slow down the rest of the game.

As Tran heated up, so did his teammates. Rivas hit 5 of 6 free throws in the fourth quarter and overtime and finished with 19 points. Johnny Tieu finished with 17 points, none bigger than the three free throws he rattled in to give Yerba Buena a 52-49 lead with 3:10 left in regulation.


Advertisement

Tran's 3-pointer put Yerba Buena (11-13, 10-4) on top 59-56 with 1:03 to play in the fourth quarter.

But Ryan Williams answered with a basket to make it 59-58, and Alex Hall's free throw with four seconds remaining sent the game into overtime.

Jordan Sakamoto's one-handed running jumper and 3-pointer that followed gave Branham a 66-64 lead. But Tran responded with a 3-pointer, and Yerba Buena did not trail again.

"I had faith in my team, and we pulled through with the win," Tran said. "Everyone on the team put in work. All the shots that fell felt good. We came back, kept our momentum going."

Yerba Buena coach Anthony Bendter praised his players' effort.

"It's not how we drew it up," he said. "But Marcus got hot, Johnny got hot, we started playing a little better D.".

Williams led Branham (9-13, 6-8) with 22 points. Joe Gorham finished with 14 points.

Girls basketball

Wilcox 55, Lynbrook 35: The Chargers trailed by two at halftime but completely dominated the second half. Joeseta Fatuesi had 12 of her 22 points in the first half, and D'Airrien Jackson scored all 13 of her points in the second half as Wilcox (20-2, 10-0) pulled away.

Football

Tim Adams, the coordinator of Terra Nova's high-scoring offense the past five years, was named head coach Friday, replacing the retired Bill Gray.

Staff writer Glenn Reeves contributed to this report.