The Pima Community College men's basketball (20-11) will head to its first Region I, Division II championship game in seven years after the Aztecs defeated Glendale Community College (17-14) in a fast-paced, high-scoring game.
The No. 2 seeded Aztecs defeated the No. 3 Gauchos 119-111 on Wednesday at the West Campus. The Aztecs will head to Phoenix College on Friday night for the Region I, Division II championship.
The Aztecs took an early double digit lead at 22-11 after going 8 for 11 from the field and 4 for 4 from three-point range in less than five minutes. They went on to hit their first six 3-pointers and led by as much as 21 points at 42-21 with 10 minutes left in the half.
The Gauchos went on a 10-0 run towards the end of the half to cut it to single digits at 51-43. The Aztecs maintained a 57-48 lead at the break.
Glendale cut Pima's lead to 63-61 with 15:16 left in the game but the Aztecs countered with a 13-4 run to take back the double digit lead back at 76-65 forcing the Gauchos to call timeout at the 12:16 mark. Later, sophomore Jacob Anastasi (Cactus Shadows HS) hit a three-pointer to make it 94-77, Pima's biggest lead of the second half.
With the score at 96-81, the Gauchos made it a single digit deficit once again with a 13-2 run to put the score at 98-94 with 4:30 left. Freshman Alize Travis hit a big three-pointer to stop the run.
The Aztecs went 9 for 10 on free throws in the final two minutes to close it out.
The Aztecs produced six scorers in double figures and three players with double-doubles on the night. Sophomore Deion James (Empire HS) scored a team-high 25 points and also had 11 rebounds for his 18th double-double of the season. Travis finished with 23 points, 15 assists and six steals. He went 5 for 7 from the field and 12 for 14 from the free throw line. Sophomore Damon Dubots had 19 points and 12 rebounds on 7 for 8 shooting.
Sophomore Emilio Acedo (Salpointe Catholic HS) had 18 points as he went 6 for 10 from the field and 3 for 5 from three-point range. Anastasi produced 15 points while freshman Isaiah Murphy (Cienega HS) contributed with 11 points off the bench.
The win gives the Aztecs 20 wins on the season for the first time since the 2009-10 season which is also the last time they won a Region I, Division II tournament game.
The Aztecs will play at No. 1 seed Phoenix College for the Region I, Division II championship. Tip-off is set for Friday at 7:30 p.m.
GCC 48 63 111
PCC 57 62 119