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Friday, May 6, 2016

Pimental celebrates night with key points in OT win

Tuesday, February 5, 2013

Lone Cascade senior Jake Pimental hit the tying layup to send Monday night's game against Franklin County into overtime. He led all scorers with 20 points on his senior night.
(T-G Photo by Chris Siers)
In the final regular season game of the season, the Cascade Champions wanted to build a little momentum against non-district opponent Franklin County before heading into the District 9-A tournament this weekend.

A win on Monday night's senior night, however, meant a little bit more for the lone Champion senior--Jake Pimental.

Pimental dominated from start to finish and led all scorers with 20 points in the Champs' 65-53 win on Monday night.

While the on-court action was what Cascade fans have come to expect from the No. 2 seeded team in District 9-A, things were a little bit different on the sideline with Cascade coach Mike Edmondson was unable to be at the game due to an illness.

In his absence, assistant coach Jimmy Hittson took the helm and guided the Champs to the victory.

"I was kind of nervous, but being around Coach (Charlie) Pope and Coach Mike (Edmondson), I was ready. We've got a good group of boys too," Hittson said.

It wasn't an easy task, though. Although Cascade has struggled with a good start lately, the Champs took off out of the gates and established an early momentum with a 16-point first quarter.

Little by little, the Rebels were able to fight back into contention and tie the game up at several points throughout regulation.

With a 51-50 lead and less than a minute to play in the fourth quarter, the turnover bug struck the Champs. And the Rebs converted the turnover with a huge trey by Tyler Schaub with 18 seconds left.

With hope of a win fading by the second, Pimental put the Champs on his back and drove to the basket and hit the game-tying layup to send it into overtime.

Although it was a close battle throughout regulation, overtime was no contest.

Hittson again challenged the team to knuckle down and focus on limiting Schaub's effectiveness on the offensive end of the floor.

The challenge worked.

"I challenged the boys on defense in the fourth quarter to lock them down. We were trying to contain No. 24 (Schaub). He didn't score any more in overtime," Hittson said.

Alex Hatchett gets set to go up strong for the layup and draws the foul on the attempt. Hatchett added eight points for the Champs on Monday night.
(T-G Photo by Chris Siers)
Cascade buried Franklin County in the extra four minute period, outscoring the Rebs 12-0 and closing the book on the regular season with the win.

While it was a team effort that secured the win, it was Pimental's efforts as a senior leader that shined in the OT win.

"I told Jake before the ball game that it was his night, to be under control and have fun. And he did. I was proud of him," Hittson said.

Pimental banked a game-high 20 points, including four triples to lead the Champs to the win.

He got some key support from teammates Will Holt and Blake Floyd, both of whom finished the game in double figures.

Holt nearly duplicated Pimental's performance with 19 points, while Floyd added 12 more.

While it was a solid win to close the regular season, the Champs still have work to do if they want to continue their season.

There's just one roadblock in the way--the Community Vikings.

Cascade will face off against Community on Saturday night in the first round of the District 9-A tournament, where it's win or go home.

And neither team is ready to call it a season just yet.

Tip-off is set for 7 p.m. in Wartrace.

Franklin Co. 8 15 18 12 0 -- 53

Cascade 16 10 12 15 12 -- 65

Franklin Co.: Tyler Schaub 15, Hunter Watson 13, Robert Jordan 12, Montrez Vanzant 6, Tyler Lester 5, Matt Schmitz 2.

Cascade: Jake Pimental 20, Will Holt 19, Blake Floyd 12, Alex Hatchett 8, James Lattimore 6.

3-Point goals: Franklin Co. (9): Schaub 3, Watson 3, Jordan 2, Lester; Cascade (4): Pimental 3, Holt.

Halftime score: Cascade 26, Franklin Co. 23.

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