Senior Tashan Hairston came down the floor and knocked down a two-pointer to bring East within nine points with 1:07 remaining.
The East full-court press forced a turnover, and Timmy Bradshaw stepped back and took a 23-foot three-pointer from in front of the Jags bench. The trey fell, and East was suddenly alive, having cut the lead to 80-74 with 1:02 remaining.
The Bulldogs sank two more free throws on the other end, but Bradshaw stepped up again on the offensive end. From almost the exact same spot as before, he drained a three-pointer to make the score 82-77 with 47 seconds remaining.
“Timmy was not hitting anything ... and then to step up and hit the two threes that he did in the final minute is just remarkable on his part,” O’Bryan said.
Two more ’Dog free throws pushed the lead back to seven points with 38 seconds on the clock.
Senior Cody Collins sank a basket for East to make it a five-point game. The Jaguars got another turnover and fed the ball to CJ Boyd. The guard picked his way through the defense and to the basket, drawing a foul and sinking his shot. His ensuing free throw brought East to within one basket at 84-82 with 16 seconds remaining.
“It was just all the little things that they executed down the stretch; you can’t coach that,” O’Bryan said. “... I think every one of them at some point made great plays, CJ especially.”
On the defensive end, Cameron Thomas fouled out with 10 points. Dunbar missed both free throws to give East a chance following a Jags’ timeout.
East had just 10 seconds, and they used every tick. After working the ball around to try and find Bradshaw down low, Collins was able to get free in the paint and bank the ball in at the buzzer. The basket tied the game 84-84 and sent the game to overtime.
“(The plan was to) get Timmy the ball cutting on the baseline, Cody was going to set a screen on the baseline and Timmy was going to come underneath. If Timmy wasn’t open then Cody was going to turn and seal try and get the ball on the block. It worked. (Collins) ended up catching the ball right there on the block, and the ball barely went in (in time), but it squeaked in,” O’Bryan said. “My hat’s off to the kids. I can’t sit here and take credit for that; that’s all them. That’s just tremendous heart and tremendous pride and tremendous faith in one another to get the job done.”
East won the tip and held the ball for more than 80 seconds before even making a move. The Jaguars were able to strike first at the 2:24 mark of the four-minute extra period. Hairston drew a foul and went to the line, where he sank both attempts to give East its first lead of the night.
Bradshaw pushed the lead to four on a basket, and Boyd sank a pair of free throws to make it 90-84 with 1:46 remaining.
Dunbar pulled within four points, but a basket by Collins and more free throws by Bradshaw made it an eight-point game with 30 seconds remaining.
Hairston made a huge play in the overtime period. On what appeared to be an easy fast-break basket for Dunbar, Hairston caught up with the ball-handler and blocked the shot from behind. The play was even more impressive since the senior was playing with four fouls for much of the fourth quarter and all of the overtime period.
East went on to hold the lead and get its 21st win of the year and 10th in a row.
The Jaguars were lucky to even have a shot at winning after a dismal first half. Dunbar scored at will in the first half and was dominating the Jaguars down low. East trailed 25-11 after the first period and 48-30 at the half.