Cougars lose game and traction

NORTHEAST GLENDALE — One more defensive stand would have put the Glendale Adventist Academy boys’ basketball team back in the playoff picture.

Instead, it didn’t get it and its postseason plans might have been halted Thursday night.

The Cougars yielded a three-point basket by junior guard Zohrab Keshishian with four seconds left in the fourth quarter before going cold on offense in overtime en route to a 49-46 Westside League home loss to Armenian General Benevolent Union.

Glendale Adventist (8-13, 4-6 in league) remains in fifth place in league with two games left. The top four teams automatically qualify for the postseason.

The Cougars, who lost their fourth game by three points or less this season, took a 44-41 lead with 24 seconds left in regulation on a pair of free throws by junior guard Luke Vazquez. After the Titans (9-7, 5-3) called timeout, they went down the court before finding Keshishian open for a three-pointer.

Glendale Adventist Coach Kevin McCloskey said a missed coverage assignment occurred prior to Keshishian’s shot.

“As far a Xs and Os are concerned, we just didn’t execute,” McCloskey said. “We wanted to guard against the three-point shot because they couldn’t hurt us making a [two-point basket].

“Neither of our big guys rotated out and we knew what was coming. We did a poor job of executing right there.”

Keshishian’s shot inflated the Titans and took the steam out of the Cougars heading into the four-minute overtime session. The Titans got all five of their points in the extra stanza from Keshishian.

Keshishian made one of two free throws to give the Titans a 49-46 lead with 33 seconds left. Glendale Adventist junior guard Kyle Voight’s three-pointer with two seconds remaining bounced off the side of the rim before time expired.

McCloskey said the Cougars have not been able to put together a complete offensive game, something that’s put them toward the bottom of the seven-team league race.

“We put up one big quarter and then we go down,” said McCloskey, whose team held an 18-15 halftime lead. “We’ve talked about putting together four good quarters.

“I thought we played hard and we have gotten so much better. I’m just disappointed for them. I hope they don’t forget this loss because now you see what you can learn from this game.”

The Cougars took a 38-32 lead when junior forward Ghassan Abdul-Karim made two free throws with 4:51 left in the fourth quarter. Glendale Adventist received 10 points apiece from Abdul-Karim and Vazquez.

The Titans got a game-high 22 points and five assists from Keshishian and 18 points and a game-high 13 rebounds from Kevork Kevorkian, a senior forward.

The Cougars lost both season meetings by three points.


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