| Golden Sierra outlasts Vacaville Christian boys 57-54
Despite mounting a 12-point rally with two minutes left in the final quarter, Vacaville Christian High School boys basketball team lost to Golden Sierra at home Wednesday night, 57-54.
In their first meeting since last February, the Grizzlies (8-9, 1-1 Sierra Delta League) took an early lead with a trio of three-pointers for an abrupt 9-2 advantage versus the Falcons (8-9, 2-2 SDL). But 12-for-24 shooting from the charity stripe, poor rebounding and an overall lack of passionate play prevented the Falcons from overcoming their stagnant start.
Vacaville Christian senior captain Adam Grabowski willed his team in the fourth quarter rally with a game-high 29 points, 10 rebounds and four assists. However, distinctly recalling their previous encounter — which prevented the Falcons from hosting a first-round playoff game last spring — the 6-foot-5 senior felt that intensity levels mirrored last year’s frustrating defeat as they blew a 12-point lead in Garden Valley.
“During a timeout I yelled at my teammates and reminded them of a similar situation against them last year where we were up but lost the game late,” Grabowski said. “I think the biggest thing was our intensity.”
Grabowski credited junior forward Quinlan Sweany and senior big man Wade Davis for increased energy for much of the game but knows everyone will have to buy in if they hope to see their long-term goals come to fruition. Sweany and Davis accounted for three blocks of the Falcons’ six blocks and logged 16 of their team’s 33 rebounds.
However, few teams can manage to come away with a victory when they collect just 17 defensive rebounds as a team and open the game with only five points in the first quarter.
“We came out so soft and we just need to come out with more fire,” Grabowski said. “They shouldn’t be able to push us around like that. We’re the better team and the bigger team so if we just come out with more intensity it would have been a different game.”
Facing a 52-40 deficit with the Falcons fans and visiting Grizzlies fans volleying chants as the final 2:13 ticked off the clock, Davis and Grabowski chipped away at the 12-point deficit with Davis registering a much-needed put-back and Grabowski scoring a quick eight points in just over a minute.
Golden Sierra turnovers helped make the comeback possible. But once the Falcons tied the game at 54-54, the Grizzlies held them scoreless the rest of the way.
“What we’re trying to figure out about the team is getting them to have that desire to want that ball,” said VCHS head coach David Kuch. “What us coaches were talking about after the game was how do we get them to play with intensity from the start? We had five points in the first quarter and it’s hard to comeback from that no matter who you’re playing.”
The Falcons will have a week off to regroup before hosting Rio Vista (7-5, 1-1 SDL) Jan. 17 as they look to snap a two-game losing streak.
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