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New Home OT shot ruled late as Lipan wins dramatic boys basketball 2A state semifinal

SAN ANTONIO — After the longest two minutes of either coach's career, referees ruled New Home's apparent game-winner came after the buzzer.

The Leopards had possession with 0.3 seconds and Caleb Cook converted his shot. But after review, the referees deemed it late in a 40-39 overtime win by Lipan in a Class 2A state semifinal Friday at the Alamodome.

It was the second crucial play at the buzzer, as regulation ended with a missed 3-pointer by Lipan's Court Gaylor.

New Home reacts to losing the boys Class 2A state semifinal game against Lipan, Friday, March 8, 2024, at the Alamodome in San Antonio.
New Home reacts to losing the boys Class 2A state semifinal game against Lipan, Friday, March 8, 2024, at the Alamodome in San Antonio.

New Home defense up bright and early

The Leopards defense got an early wake-up call and responded. New Home had four steals as part of five forced turnovers in the opening period to take a 9-8 lead.

Lipan's Court Gaylor got loose for a string of three consecutive 3s in the second quarter to build a 22-12 advantage, but the Leopards clamped down the final 3 minutes, 52 seconds of the half.

New Home forced three turnovers during a 7-0 run to close the second quarter. Lipan attempted one shot in the stretch and held a 22-19 edge.

The Leopards finished with 17 points off 18 turnovers.

Caleb Cook, Court Gaylor duel on offense

Cook, whose first five points gave the Leopards an early 9-6 advantage, led a balanced attack on offense. He scored eight points in the first half then added seven in the third quarter.

Cook had five consecutive points in the third period to give New Home its largest lead at 33-27. He finished with a team-high 17 points.

Gaylor did it in a different fashion but powered Lipan. The freshman son of coach Brent Gaylor made five 3-pointers en route to a game-high 27 points.

New Home continues quest for first state final

In the program's third state tournament, the Leopards were agonizingly close to their first title bout.

Lipan ousted New Home last year, and Moulton did the deed in 1989. The Bobkatz beat the Leopards 65-61 in New Home's first semifinal appearance. The Leopards' three defeats have all been within eight points.

This article originally appeared on Lubbock Avalanche-Journal: Lipan beats New Home on OT shot ruled after buzzer