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Sonoma boys win 4-OT thriller

Sonoma’s Cyle Gusse, who posted a double-double in the Dragons’ nonleague four-overtime win over Mt. Diablo, scores during an earlier game in Pfeiffer Gym. Bill Hoben/ Index-Tribune

Sonoma’s Cyle Gusse, who posted a double-double in the Dragons’ nonleague four-overtime win over Mt. Diablo, scores during an earlier game in Pfeiffer Gym. Bill Hoben/ Index-Tribune

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After fading late in a loss two days earlier, the Sonoma Valley High School’s varsity basketball boys showed no quit and refused to fade in a nonleague road marathon last Thursday night.

The visiting Dragons battled Mt. Diablo in a seesaw game that ended regulation play in a standoff, and then neither team could claim a win through a rare stretch of four overtime periods before Sonoma, with junior Cyle Gusse leading the way with 37 points, pulled out an exhausting 85-80 victory.

Along with his game-high point total, Gusse, who played all four overtimes with four fouls, completed a double-double evening with his game-high 23 rebounds and four blocks.

The Dragons were also led by senior Jesse Summers’ double-double of 20 points and 10 rebounds; junior Ryan Wilbanks’ 13 points, five rebounds and one block; senior Jack Murphy’s six points and eight rebounds; senior Vinny Albano’s five points and five rebounds; junior Trevor Welch’s two points and four rebounds; senior Andy Chavez’s two points; and junior Tristan Mertens’ five rebounds.

“One of the more exciting games we have had in a few years – it was intense for four quarters and four overtimes, with a 31-24 deficit at half time. With the officiating maybe being the most questionable I have seen in a long time, I’m proud of our boys for always believing and never giving up,” said Sonoma head coach Dennis Housman. “Cyle (Gusse) stepped up big with 37 and 23 rebounds. Jesse (Summers) hit a huge shot at the end of regulation to tie it up after Mt. Diablo came back and took the lead with a few seconds left. Vinny (Albano) fouled out in the first overtime and Jesse in the second overtime. But Cyle (Gusse) managed to play all the overtimes with four fouls.”

The Dragons host Terra Linda in their final home game for nearly a month this Friday, Dec. 20, in Pfeiffer Gym, before completing their nonleague schedule competing in the Marin Catholic Tournament the weekend of Dec. 26 to 30, and playing at Windsor on Saturday, Jan. 4.

Sonoma’s boys then open their Sonoma County League campaign at Healdsburg on Tuesday, Jan. 7, followed by SCL road games at Petaluma and El Molino on Jan. 11 and 14, before finally returning home to host league foe Piner on Thursday, Jan. 16.