The schedule showed Clark College and Mt. Hood played basketball on Saturday night.
But to hear Clark coach Alex Kirk describe his team’s 95-89 double overtime win, it could have been a heavyweight title fight.
“They punched us in the mouth and we didn’t back down,” Kirk said. “We punched them and they didn’t back down.”
Clark twice held 16-point leads in the first half. But in a game matching the top two teams in the Northwest Athletic Association of Community Colleges coaches poll, a blowout was never likely.
“There’s a reason they are ranked number one,” Kirk said. “They came back at us with everything they had. Luckily we have a resilient group that had just enough gas in the tank to pull out the win.”
By halftime, Clark’s lead was down to 35-33. With 10:58 to play, Clark was down 63-50.
“There were moments that guys were looking at each other and you could see they wanted to press the panic button,” Kirk said. “But they stuck with the game plan and relied on each other.”
Clark rallied, tying the game at 78 when Kyle Thurston hit a 3-pointer with 13 seconds left to play.
Neither team led by more than two points in the first overtime, with ended 87-87.
Clark allowed two points in the first four minutes of the second five-minute overtime. The Penguins pulled away by making free throws.
Clark’s Sean Price poured in a game high 31 points. Collin Spickerman had 20 points, 12 rebounds and five blocks. Ronalds Elksnis 18 points and five rebounds.