Both teams had held the lead three times during a Goessel High School boys’ basketball game against Wakefield, and Wakefield was ahead, 40-38, with 3 minutes, 30 seconds to play in the game on Friday night.
Goessel put up a shot, and a swarm of bodies collided under the bucket for the rebound. The long arms of Davis Cook won the carom and, while falling out of bounds, fired the ball to Nic Buller in the right corner, who whipped the ball to the top of the key to a wide-open Braden Unruh who sank a 3-pointer, giving the Bluebirds the lead, 41-40.
But passionate fans on both sides of the gym knew that more action was to follow. The Bombers were unable to score on the next possession and again Cook gathered in an offensive rebound and was pushed out of bounds as he attempted to go up to score. He was able to connect on one of two free throws to give the Bluebirds a 2-point lead. Shane Goerzen picked the pocket of the Wakefield point guard with 1:30 to play in the game. The Bombers were forced to foul in order to stop the clock, Goerzen missed a free-throw with 27 seconds to play, but Unruh connected on two free-throws to give the Bluebirds a 44-40 victory.
All evening, Buller found success with his left-handed dribble and a mixture of layups, jump shots and floaters to keep the game tied at 12 at the end of the first quarter. Unruh canned a 3-pointer from the right corner on a set play as the first half ended to stifle an 8-0 run by Wakefield. The teams went to the locker room with the Bombers ahead, 24-21.
Buller scored first and last in the third quarter, with Goerzen hitting a 3, Cook getting a basket, and Drake Sterk connecting on two free throws. The Bluebirds led, 32-31, at the end of three periods.
Cook was effective with two baskets from 10 feet, and then excited the Goessel crowd with a wide-open jumper from 19 feet at the top of the key to tie the game at 38 early in the fourth quarter.
Leading the way for Goessel was Buller with 12 points hitting 75 percent of his field goals. Unruh also finished with 12 points and 4 assists; Cook had 11 points, including 7 in the fourth quarter, and 9 rebounds; Peter Voth had 4 points; Goerzen had 3 points; and Sterk had 2 points.