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Colusa County had many formidable boys basketball teams this season, but the last men standing were the Pierce Bears, who climbed their way to the top rung of the state championships.
Although they fell 58-37 at the Regional Finals on March 10, the top-seeded Bears had a lot to be proud of.
“It’s tough to get to such a huge game and fall short,” said Pierce coach, Cody McCullough. “But without a doubt, our heads are high for going on such an incredible run.”
The game itself had many good plays against the San Domenico Panthers, whom the Bears had won against earlier in the season at a tournament. But the Bears underestimated their foe.
Junior Justin Mathews led in points scored for the team, with a total of 14, and senior Alex High was not far behind with his 2-point shots. A 3-pointer from senior Daniel Medina, in the fourth quarter, gave fans hope the Bears would pull out, but it was not enough.
“We knew going into the game that we would likely be facing the toughest defense we had faced all season,” McCullough added. “But we didn’t expect them to be just as great offensively as they were defensively. Every player on their team played a top notch game, each knocking down huge shots and scoring at all the right times. They never let us go on a run and always had an answer.”
Despite a loss that weighed heavy on the team, fans undoubtedly will have a lot to look forward to next year with so many juniors on the team.
“Luckily, four of five starters will return next season as seniors, while a number of bench players will also return and improve our depth,” McCullough said, looking already for what the team will be able to build off from this year’s amazing season. “We have a lot to be proud of and a lot to look forward to.” ■