Gillette buzzer-beater gives CR men dramatic win


File photo – CR’s Drew Gillette nailed a buzzer-beating 3 to beat Southwestern Oregon on Saturday afternoon.

A buzzer-beating 3-pointer by Drew Gillette kept the Corsairs rolling on Saturday afternoon, as they closed out their own men’s basketball tournament with a fifth straight win.

They had to fight for this one, rallying from double-digit deficit with a big second half and edging out Southwestern Oregon 91-89.

Gillette, one of four former Fortuna stars on this year’s team, came up clutch for Redwoods with the big finish, nailing his sixth 3-pointer of the night, and his fifth of the second half.

“He’s a big moment guy, like many of our guys,” CR head coach Ryan Bisio said of the freshman guard. “There was no doubt when it left his hands.”

Donald Willis and Thomas Nelson each had a team-high 23 points in the win, while Gillette finished with 22 points.

The Corsairs have scored 80 or more points in all five wins on their current streak, and improved to 10-3.

The CR defense struggled early to contain a potent Southwestern offense, and in particular Jael Vaughn who scored 20 points in the opening half as the visitors took a 54-43 lead into the break.

The second half, however, was a different story.

“Defensively we tightened up in the second half,” Bisio said. “We just chipped away possession by possession, and just played with a laser focus in the second half and had a really steady disposition.”

Next up, the CR men travel to play at the Santa Rosa tournament which tips off on Thursday.

CR Women 67, San Mateo 58

Julianna Ortega-Miranda scored a team-high 15 points to lead the Corsairs to their sixth straight win on Saturday.

Bree Northern added 11 points and Darienne Kartes 10 points, as the CR women improved to 8-2.

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