The gods were smiling on the Clear Lake (Lakeport, Calif.) High boys basketball team on Friday night.
Cardinals teammates Ootie Lane and Danny Partida each hit buzzer-beating 3-pointers to end the third and fourth quarters, respectively, delivering a wild 62-61 victory against rival Lower Lake (Calif.) High. If either prayer hadn't been answered, Clear Lake would still be searching for its first league win.
First came Lane's ridiculous one-armed heave that traveled about 90 feet and banked off the glass as time expired, a shot that will henceforth be known as an "Ootie." That Ootie tied the game, 47-47, entering the fourth quarter.
"It was almost a full-court shot," Lower Lake head coach Tim Biasotti told the Lake County Record-Bee. "He launched it one-handed with every ounce of energy he had."
Added Clear Lake coach Scott De Leon: "When it passed our bench, I thought it had a chance ... and it went in."
Then, trailing 61-59 with 31.4 seconds remaining and the shot clock turned off, Clear Lake crossed halfcourt this time, given ample time to run its offense. A series of seven passes found a Cardinals big man trapped underneath his own basket as precious seconds ticked off the clock, but he found Partida 25 feet from the basket for the game-winner.
"He just happened to be the open guy," De Leon told the paper. "It was not by design."
Not by design. Just part of the grand design.
Maria Lane, presumably Ootie's mother, shared videos of both shots on the Record-Bee's Facebook page.