Leland boys win nailbiter

Veteran Leland High School boys basketball coach Eugene Sanders has seen just about everything over the years, but he said he has not seen many finishes as wild as his team’s home game over Riverside High School Friday night.

Leland won the key district game 57-54, after both team’s turned the ball over a combined five times in the game’s final minute.

Leland’s Corbin Jakevion scored the game’s final points by making a pair of free throws with seven ticks left in the game. A last-second shot by Riverside failed to hit its mark, and the Cubs escaped with the three-point win.

“We’ve got a young team, and we are still learning,” Sanders said. “Our defense really stepped up tonight, and we were able to get the job done.”

Sparked by nice teamwork from players like Brennan Buchanan, Jonovan Tyler, Ozel Clay and Jonathan Richardson, the Bulldogs built a six-point lead midway through the final quarter. But back-to-back buckets by Ja’Quavion Jones and Demarcus Green helped the Cubs cut Riverside’s lead to just one point with three minutes left in the game.

The game went back and forth the rest of the way with each team taking no more than a one-point lead. Riverside’s final turnover came with 16 seconds left in the game.

“We just need to learn how to win,” said Riverside coach Eddie Wade, whose team dropped to 5-7. “We had our chances at the end, but we just could not get it done.”

The Bulldogs next game is Tuesday night at home against O’Bannon High School. Leland hosts South Delta Tuesday night.