MORAGA — Apparently, when it comes to the Analy-Sebastopol High boys basketball team, it's safe to trust the scouting report.
Miramonte coach Dave Brown had heard the Tigers were a team that liked to shoot, and that when they caught fire anything could happen.
Well, Brown got to see it firsthand on Friday. Analy converted 13 3-pointers and battled back from 13-point second-half deficit to claim the program's first North Coast Section championship with a 76-73 overtime win in the Division III final at McKeon Pavilion.
"Some of those shots down the stretch, our best defenders were in their face," Brown said. "Only one other time have I seen that many 3-pointers put up in that sort of a time frame. That was pretty incredible."
The Matadors (24-5) held a 52-39 lead with 2:42 left in the third quarter when the Tigers began their comeback by spanning the third and fourth quarters with 12-2 run. However, every time every time Analy (26-6) looked as though it would tie the game, Miramonte would hold it off.
It wasn't until sophomore Max Fujii hit a running 3-pointer in the face of two defenders that the Tigers were able to tie the game at 69-69 with 5.1 seconds left in regulation.
"My coach is always telling me to control the game and stuff," said Fujii, who finished with a game-high 32 points, including a 17-point fourth quarter. "But I didn't know what else to do, so I just shot it."
Both teams scored on their first possession of overtime, and then Fujii's eighth and final 3-pointer gave Analy a lead that it would never relinquish.
"Oh my God, that was clutch," teammate Gavin Winter said of Fujii's efforts. "He is not a sophomore. He plays like he graduated three years ago. He's amazing."
It was Winter who sank two free throws with 16.1 seconds left in overtime that led to the final score. Miramonte had two possessions to attempt a game-tying shot. They got a shot up on only none of them.
The last possession required the Matadors to go the length of the floor with four seconds left. Eric Obeysekere caught the half-court pass, but his attempt to pass it off to Jared O'Leary was deflected and went out of bounds to the Tigers.
It was the last play of a standout night for Obeysekere. The Holy Cross-bound senior finished with 28 points and 15 rebounds. His 14-point third quarter was the reason Miramonte held a double-digit lead heading into the fourth quarter.
The two teams entered the game with just one NCS championship banner between them. Miramonte was the Division III champ in 1998, but hadn't been to a final since 2001.
Contact Chace Bryson at firstname.lastname@example.org.