In a huge matchup of two top teams in the boys' third- and fourth-grade division of Newport-Mesa National Junior Basketball, the Spartans beat the Celtics, 41-39, in overtime to remain undefeated at 9-0 heading into the final regular-season game.
The back-and-forth game was highlighted by two of the league's top players, Luke Barnes from the Spartans and Tommy Griffin of the Celtics. Both players dazzled the crowd with Griffin tallying 21 points and Barnes with 12 points, eight rebounds and six assists.
Augie Fisher added a season-high 13 points and 12 rebounds for the Spartans, while Jordan Stucki added six points. Calder Overfelt scored nine for the Celtics in the loss.
Griffin led a fierce comeback for the Celtics, who were down eight in the final quarter, scoring four straight buckets to take the lead with seconds to go, but Barnes came back and hit a big bucket and foul to win the game. However, the referee called off the basket and made Barnes go to the free-throw line for two shots where he tied the game to send it into overtime.
In overtime, Fisher and Travis O'Neil hit consecutive baskets to pull away for the win.