Culver City High School boys basketball team’s season ends in 82-79 loss March 7
A three-pointer at the buzzer by Achebe Thompson forced a third overtime, but the Culver City High School boys basketball team could not overcome Buena High School, falling 82-79 in the CIF-State Southern California Division III regional final on March 7.
The thrilling loss ended an incredible run for the Centaurs, who went further in the State Championship playoffs than any other Culver City team in history.
Del Goodyear Gym was rocking as Buena entered the final minute of regulation with a 53-47 lead.
But Culver City created the offense it needed with a series of steals. It scored twice within seconds to pull within 55-53 with 25 seconds left. Then two more times in the final 8.5 seconds to force overtime, 57-57.
In the first overtime, the Centaurs led by three before Buena’s Luke Ortz drilled a game-tying three-ponter as the clock expired.
In the second overtime, it was Buena that managed a three-point lead until Thompson’s clutch right-wing jumper with just 9.7 seconds left again extended the game.
In the third overtime, Culver City had a chance to force yet another four minutes, but a potential game-tying three bounced off the rim as the clock ran out.
Still, the contest marked the deepest the Centaurs have ever gone in the Station Championships.
Culver City, coached by former Lakers’ great Michael Cooper, got 17 points apiece from Thompson and Braylon Singleton, while Connor Scales added 13 points, Brycen Matthews scored 12 and Myles Singleton 11.
Cooper has coached professionally for the WNBA Sparks and Dream, and coached previously at the high school level, but he’s making an impact at Culver City.
“We’re so lucky to have him,” athletic director Tom Salter said. “He’s so energetic. He leads rallies at the school.”
The Centaurs ended the season with a record of 19-13.
This arcticle originally appeared in the Culver CIty Unified School District’s March 10 newsletter.