GALLUP — Alfonso Hubbard scored a game-high 30, and the Gallup Bengals rallied late to hold off the Clovis Wildcats 62-57 Saturday night for the Gallup Inviational championship.
Hubbard and hit three of Gallup’s seven 3-pointers, while Zach Troncoso added 13 for the Bengals.
Clovis (10-5) responded most of the night, with a 12-1 run to bridge the first and second quarters and a 20-12 third period. But the Wildcats couldn’t hold on to a seven-point lead in the fourth.
“We tried to force some passes,” Clovis coach J.D. Isler said. “It got their crowd into it.”
With 47 seconds to play and a 57-57 tie, Hubbard pulled down an offensive rebound and Isler felt he traveled before he called a timeout. Officials awarded the Bengals (9-3) the timeout. Ryan Vicenti hit a corner 3-pointer later on the possession to give Gallup the lead for good.
“We played well enough to win, but the travel no-call was ridiculous at the end,” Isler said. “But we have ourselves to blame because we didn’t take care of the ball.”
Arthur Calbert led the Wildcats with 23 points, while Jaye Crockett scored 13 and Dexter Correll 11.
“We were really patient on offense in the third quarter and took care of the ball,” Isler said. “They were double- and triple-teaming Jaye. He did a really good job finding the open man.”
Calbert and Crockett were both named to the all-tournament team for the Wildcats, who face Highland on the road Friday. Even with the loss, Isler’s optimistic 15 games in.
“We come out of this tournament playing the best teams,” Isler said. “We’re still not playing our best. We beat the No. 1 ranked team and we should have beat this team.”