Yavzuri’s redeeming three gives Gilboa/Galil clutch win

Dagan Yavzuri went from villain to hero within less than seven seconds, hitting a three-pointer with 0.4 seconds to play.

HAPOEL GILBOA/GALIL center Ido Kuzikaro 311 (photo credit: Asaf Kliger)
HAPOEL GILBOA/GALIL center Ido Kuzikaro 311
(photo credit: Asaf Kliger)
Dagan Yavzuri went from villain to hero within less than seven seconds on Sunday night, hitting a three-pointer with 0.4 seconds to play to give Hapoel Gilboa/Galil a 75-74 BSL win over Maccabi Rishon Lezion in Gan Ner moments after committing a turnover which looked to have cost his team the game.
A tight first half between two of the league’s in-form teams ended in a 41-40 Gilboa advantage, and despite trailing by as many as nine points (51-42), Rishon was still well within striking distance with 10 minutes remaining (58-53).
The game would be decided in the closing seconds, with Derwin Kitchen’s free throws with 9.8 remaining tying the score at 72-72.
Yavzuri turned over the ball from the subsequent inbounds pass and Kitchen seemed to have won the game for Rishon with an uncontested dunk.
However, after receiving the ball under his own basket, Yavzuri would pump-fake two Rishon players on the edge of the three-point arc before scoring a dramatic winning shot.
“That was a bad turnover and I already thought about how I would get beat up by my teammates in the locker room,” said Yavzuri, who ended the game with 13 points.
“I still don’t understand how my shot went in.”
Romeo Travis led Gilboa with 22 points and nine rebounds, with Joseph Jones adding 15 points for the winners, who improved to 10-5 on the season and took sole possession of second place.
Joe Crawford and Adrian Uter had 18 points each for Rishon, which lost for the first time in five games.
Hapoel Holon had a chance to move tied with Gilboa below Maccabi Tel Aviv, but Dwayne Mitchell’s tip-in with 0.8 seconds to play gave Ironi Ashkelon a 73-71 win over Dan Shamir’s side, which had won its previous three games.
There was little to separate the teams throughout the entire encounter in Ashkelon, with a Ron Lewis free throw tying the game at 71-71.
Raviv Limonad missed a chance to give the hosts the win as time was about to expire, but Mitchell was on hand to ensure Ashkelon nevertheless won for a third straight time.
Mitchell ended the game with 27 points and 12 rebounds, with Limonad scoring 17 and Marco Killingsworth contributing 12 points and 12 boards.
Bryant Dunston had 18 points and 13 rebounds for Holon, which is now tied with Ashkelon at 9-6.
Maccabi Haifa lost its ninth straight game on Sunday, falling 96-75 at Barak Netanya.
Adrian Banks had 29 points and eight assists for Netanya, with Sylven Landesberg once more the bright spot for Haifa, scoring 26 points and grabbing eight boards.
Also Sunday, Bnei Hasharon beat BC Habika’a 95-92 behind Jason Williams’s 25 points.
Rashaun Freeman had 30 points and 10 rebounds for Habika’a, which lost its third straight.