The Pima Community College men's basketball team (12-7, 6-5 in ACCAC) almost overcame a double digit deficit in the final minute against Arizona Western College.
The Aztecs lost 101-97 to the Matadors (16-3, 9-2) on Saturday in Yuma.
Down 94-80 with 1:46 left in the game, the Aztecs relied on sophomore Emilio Acedo's (Salpointe Catholic HS) three-point shooting. He cut the Matador lead to 94-83 and later got it back to single digits at 96-88 with 55.6 seconds left. Acedo hit his third three-ball and sophomore Jacob Anastasi's basket made it 99-95.
The Matadors went 1 for 2 at the line with 7.8 seconds left and sophomore Zach Evans scored after collecting an offensive rebound to make it a one possession game at 100-97 with 1.4 seconds left. Arizona Western got the ball inbounds and converted on a free throw to seal it.
Down 70-60 mid-way through the second half, sophomore Deion James (Empire HS) and Anastasi cut it to 70-64 but the Matadors went on a 10-1 in two minutes to make it 80-65. The Matadors held the double digit lead until the final minute.
The Aztecs' biggest lead was in the first half at 36-31 but the Matadors closed out the half on a 10-0 run to make it 41-36 at the break.
The Aztecs were outrebounded 49-45 and surrendered 21 offensive rebounds to the Matadors. Both teams also lived at the free throw line as the Aztecs went 25 for 34 (73.5 percent) and the Matadors were 38 for 49 (77.6 percent).
Acedo finished the game with 22 points, six rebounds and two blocks. Anastasi also scored 22 points as he went 8 for 14 from the field. James had 18 points, 10 rebounds and four assists while freshman Ilunga Moise (Kellis HS) finished with 12 points off the bench. Sophomore Damon Dubots had 11 points and nine rebounds.
The Aztecs begin the second half of the season on Wednesday when they play at Tohono O'odham Community College at 7:30 p.m.
PCC 36 61 97
AWC 41 60 101