ETV News Stock Photo by Jamie Swank
Tuesday’s rivalry game had a lot riding on it for both Pinnacle and Green River. The Panthers made the jaunt over with the goal of keeping their region title hopes alive. Meanwhile, the Pirates were aiming to improve their RPI standing and exact revenge over their foes.
Green River delivered the first blow as the visitors were slow off the blocks. The Pirates turned their four-point lead into a double-digit lead by half (28-18) after a 16-10 second quarter. They kept it going out of the break and managed to hold onto the 10-point advantage heading into the final quarter.
Points had been hard to come by all night for Pinnacle and the hole looked too great to escape. Staring straight at the huge deficit, the Panthers never flinched but began turning the offense around. After only scoring 29 points in the first three quarters, Pinnacle dropped 25 on Green River in the fourth to even the score and force overtime.
Both defenses clapped down in the extra period, only allowing six points apiece. That meant another four minutes were needed to decide this one. The Panthers finished the epic comeback with a 9-2 period in double overtime to knock off Green River 69-62.
Cole Barton and Jonathan Kessler left their marks on the contest, each recording a double-double. Barton finished with a game-high 32 points while going 14-17 from the foul line. He also recorded 14 rebounds and five steals, both team-highs. Kessler nearly had a triple-double with his 25 points, 11 rebounds and seven assists. He also visited the charity stripe often, where he went 13-16.
On the other hand, the Pirates spread out their points with Joe Vollmer scoring 15, Luis Hernandez 14, Hoyt Hunt 10, Raul Mendoza nine and Bridjer Meadows nine.
The win sets up a crucial matchup with the region title on the line Friday night. That is when Pinnacle (16-6, 6-1) will host Monticello (10-8, 7-0) in the season finale. On the other side, Green River (9-14, 2-6) will wrap up its season with senior night on Thursday against De Beque (Colorado) (8-9).