Baker & Kay's clutch shooting helps Pima men fend off Az Western
The Pima Community College men’s basketball team (15-1, 7-1 in ACCAC) overcame a slow start and broke free of a back-and-forth battle on Wednesday against Arizona Western College (13-3, 6-2).
The No. 10-ranked Aztecs defeated the Matadors 96-90 to win their seventh straight game.
Down 72-69, the Aztecs got a three-pointer from freshman Jamison Kay (Gila Ridge HS) and sophomore Traivar Jackson’s basket put the Aztecs up 74-72. It sparked a 12-1 run and Pima went up 81-73. The Aztecs took their biggest lead at 89-79 after freshman Dillan Baker (Salpointe Catholic HS) drained a three-pointer with 1:14 left.
The Matadors wouldn’t go away as they scored five of the next six points and converted on three free throws to make it 90-86 with 30 seconds remaining. Baker helped preserve the lead as he went 4 for 4 from the foul line and Jackson secured the win with a dunk to make it 96-88.
The Aztecs surrendered the first 13 points of the game as the Matadors made their first six shots of the contest. The Aztecs chipped away and went on a 30-8 run in 11 minutes to take a 30-25 lead with 5:59 left in the half. The Matadors closed out the half outscoring the Aztecs 14-8 as Pima trailed 39-38 at the break.
The Aztecs and the Matadors traded baskets and leads in the first 12 minutes of the second half before Pima made its run. There were seven ties and 23 lead changes in the game.
Baker finished with a game-high 23 points as he went 7 for 8 from the field and 4 for 5 from three-point range. He also added five assists.
Kay was a huge spark off the bench as he went 6 for 6 from beyond the arc and 7 for 9 overall from the field finishing with 20 points.
Sophomore Cesar Saenz (Sabino HS) finished the game with 21 points, five rebounds and five assists while Jackson contributed with 19 points and eight rebounds.
The Aztecs shot 35 for 55 (.646) from the field and were 13 for 19 (.684) from three-point range.
The Aztecs will be back at the West Campus Aztec Gym on Saturday when they host Glendale Community College. Tipoff is set for 2 p.m.