The last chance for many boys’ basketball teams in the district to stake their claim to a Sac-Joaquin Section playoff berth came Wednesday night.
Some answered the call, while others will be sweating out the days and hours before the Sunday afternoon’s pairings announcement.
Golden Valley 48, Pitman 46, at Pitman — Trek Fayerweather’s layup with 16 seconds remaining broke the tie, and Pitman committed a turnover and failed to get off a shot in its final two possessions. The Cougars (14-12, 6-5 in the Central California Conference) finish the season at Atwater on Friday and need to win to improve from its No. 17 ranking in Division 1.
The Pride, which closes at Los Banos on Friday, has had the most precipitous drop of any district large school. Pitman was ranked No. 9 two weeks ago before losing to Atwater and Turlock, which dropped them to No. 13 in Division 2. The loss to GV has the Pride on the bubble.
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Modesto 77, Enochs 70, at Modesto — The Panthers are another team at the mercy of the computer, having dropped from No. 16 to No. 20 by going 1-1 last week. The regular season-ending victory over the Eagles is unlikely to allow them to regain the four spots they need to reach the postseason. DeAngelo Williams scored 21 points for Modesto (12-15, 7-3 Modesto Metro Conference) while Andre Barry added 17, as the Panthers led 59-41 after three quarters. Enochs got 19 points from Herbert Whitehurst as its season ended 14-13, 3-7.
Downey 58, Beyer 48, at Beyer — Ten different Knights scored as Downey finished its season 8-19, 4-6 MMC. The Patriots suffered through a 1-24, 0-10 campaign.
East Union 64, Lathrop 41, at East Union — The Lancers took a No. 19 seed in Division 3 into this game, and in theory could reach the field of 16 with a win Friday at Manteca. Tyler Bylow scored 22 for East Union (13-12, 8-7 Valley Oak League.) Lathrop’s first varsity season ends 0-26, 0-16.
Oakdale 43, Weston Ranch 38, at Oakdale — The Cougars (14-12, 10-5 VOL) entered the week holding the final playoff spot in Division 3, but probably lost it with this defeat at the hands of the Mustangs (11-15, 7-8). Nate Madsen led Oakdale with 13 points and eight rebounds.
Sierra 55, Central Valley 44, at Sierra — The Timberwolves (18-8, 11-4 VOL) probably can start making travel plans for the first round, having entered the week ranked No. 14 in Division 3. They got 16 points from Trevor Nogueira to trip up the Hawks (2-26, 2-14.)
Turlock Christian 56, Delhi 53, at Delhi — The Eagles got a miracle finish to stay alive in the Division 5 playoff hunt. Josh Wright capped a 17-point effort with a game-tying 3-pointer with nine seconds left. After a Hawks’ turnover, Brandon Rodgers drilled a 3-pointer from the top of the key as time expired to net the win. Turlock Christian is 11-15 overall and 5-9 in the Southern League and entered the week ranked No. 17. Delhi fell to 12-15, 6-9.
Denair 55, Waterford 43, at Denair — The Coyotes (13-12, 7-7 SL) are trying to claw hard enough to gain four spots in the rankings and earn a playoff berth, and this win over the Wildcats was a step in the right direction. Clayton McDonald had 15 points for Denair, while Waterford fell to 3-22, 1-13.
Millennium 48, Big Valley Christian 39, at Millennium — Big Valley (12-11, 9-4 Harvest Christian League) will be in the Division 5 playoffs, but likely will drop from its No. 8 ranking and have to open with a road game. Jon McCall led BVC with 11 points, but the Falcons were able to rally from a 33-30 deficit after three quarters.
Patterson 55, Hilmar 36, at Hilmar — The Tigers’ sixth straight win clinched a share of the Western Athletic Conference title with Livingston and cemented their playoff hopes. Patterson (20-7, 13-2) came into the week ranked No. 14 in the very deep and difficult Division 3. Adriana Ruiz led the Tigers with 14 points. The Yellowjackets (12-15, 6-9) got nine points from September Easter.
Bee staff writer Brian VanderBeek can be reached at 578-2300.