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DES MOINES - Clunky. Herky jerky. Deliberate. A slog.
One of the lowest-scoring overtime games you'll see at the boys' state basketball tournament. For Western Dubuque, a most frustrating season-ending loss.
Jake Layman hit a pair of free throws with 22.9 seconds left, and a pair of ensuing inside looks just didn't drop as Sergeant Bluff-Luton beat the Bobcats, 38-37, in a Class 3A quarterfinal at Wells Fargo Arena.
'It came down to we missed some free throws, we didn't shoot the ball like we had all year, and give credit to them, too,” said Western Dubuque Coach Wayne Cusick. 'They defended us a little bit bitter. You know what, (stuff) happens.”
The pace of this game, well, there really wasn't much of one. SBL (17-7) was content to work the ball around out front much of the time, limiting possessions and working for mostly inside shots.
That made sense with the presence of 6-foot-8 Layman and 6-foot-10 Majok Majouk. Layman had a game-high 17 points.
Sergeant Bluff-Luton had just 26 field-goal attempts in the 36 minutes, if that tells you anything. Western Dubuque (18-5) preferred a much higher tempo, one it could never really achieve.
'At this point in the season, you just want to get the job done,” said Majouk, whose length was intimidating inside. 'It doesn't matter how you get it done.”
'It wasn't a big surprise,” Western Dubuque's Dylan Johnson said. 'We were ready for it. We just didn't execute at the end.”
Johnson got a good, though contested, look in the lane in the last 10 seconds that rimmed out. Andrew Oltmann's follow attempt also missed, with a tied ball on the rebound giving SBL possession with four seconds left.
A long pass into the front court deflected off a couple of players' hands, and in the rush to retrieve the basketball, time ran out.
'I got the shot we wanted,” said Johnson, the 6-6 senior forward, who had 13 points. 'It just didn't fall.”
Andrew Oltmanns led the Bobcats with 14 points, most of those coming on assists from Johnson. When Johnson was double teamed in the post, Oltmanns cut to the hoop, with Johnson dishing to him for layups.
Western Dubuque was just 14 of 37 from the field (37.8 percent). SBL led by four at halftime, with the game tied after three at 23.
The Bobcats led by five halfway through the fourth, which felt like 25 in this game. But SBL slapped on some double-team pressure that bothered them, with a corner trey from Nick Muller tying it back up at 34.
Western Dubuque had the final possession of regulation, but couldn't get any good looks in the final 19.2 seconds. Nick Bryant's running 15-footer at the buzzer failed to hit the rim short.
Oltmanns got the first points in OT, with Majouk hitting two free throws to tie it back up at 36 with 1:01 left. Garrett Baumhover made one of two free throws at the 35-second mark, with Layman driving on the ensuing possession and drawing a foul.
Cusick said this tournament's protocol of having two 'media” timeouts per eight-minute quarter was a hindrance. Previously, only championship games had that many timeouts.
'It's hard to get flow to the game when there's a timeout at the five-minute mark and the three-minute mark,” Cusick said. 'Everything is longer than what you do all year long. That's not an excuse. But it was just weird. It was like OK, you get a little push in, and all of a sudden, another media timeout. You think you get a little momentum going, a little pace the way we wanted it, then there's a timeout.
'But, hey, when you get down here, you've got to adjust to it. That's all there is to it.”
AT DES MOINES
SERGEANT BLUFF-LUTON (38): Majok Majouk 3-5 2-6 8, Jake Layman 4-7 8-11 17, Jacob Imming 2-4 0-2 4, Nick Muller 1-6 0-0 3, Brady Schaap 3-4 0-0 6, Bryce Click 0-0 0-0 0. Totals 13-26 10-19 38.
WESTERN DUBUQUE (37): Tommy DeSollar 2-2 0-0 4, Andrew Oltmanns 6-8 1-3 14, Dylan Johnson 4-10 3-4 13, Garrett Baumhover 1-9 1-2 3, Nick Bryant 0-7 1-3 1, Carson Schute 1-1 0-0 2. Totals 14-37 6-12 37.
Halftime - Sergeant Bluff-Luton 18, Western Dubuque 14. End of Regulation - 34-34. 3-point goals - Sergeant Bluff-Luton 2-9 (Muller 1-6, Layman 1-2, Schaap 0-1), Western Dubuque 3-14 (Baumhover 1-5, Bryant 0-3, Oltmanns 1-1, Johnson 2-5). Rebounds - Sergeant Bluff-Luton 22 (Majouk 6), Western Dubuque 21 (Oltmanns 6). Total fouls - Sergeant Bluff-Luton 13, Western Dubuque 17. Fouled out - Schaap. Assists - Sergeant Bluff-Luton 6 (Layman 4), Western Dubuque 8 (Johnson 5). Turnovers - Sergeant Bluff-Luton 13, Western Dubuque 9.
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