By HOWARD SENZELL
FOR THE PRESS DEMOCRAT
Behind Natu Hezchias’ game-high 18 points, Piner rallied to defeat visiting Windsor, 45-37, in a nonleague boys basketball game Saturday night.
After scoring only 16 points in the first half, the Prospectors matched that total in the third quarter. They took the lead for good, 29-26, on Marquise Camp’s 3-point play with 2:30 left in the stanza.
Windsor stayed within striking range in the fourth quarter before Piner finished on a 10-3 run. Camp scored four points in the run while Hezchias and Andres Oseguera had three apiece.
Neither team shot well in the first half and the Jaguars took and 18-16 lead into the locker room.
“Even though we were behind, I was feeling confident at halftime,” Hezchias said. “We’d been in that position before and came back to win.”
Hezchias, the only senior in the starting lineup, scored 10 in the second half.
Piner was playing its third game in six days and the effort against Windsor had coach Mike Erickson smiling.
“We’re working hard and getting better,” he said in the jubilant locker room. “We got some steals off our press in the third quarter and made a couple of shots. That seemed to boost everyone’s confidence.”
The Prospectors moved the ball much better in the second half and that led to more open shots.
While Piner heated up in the second half, Windsor did not.
“We just didn’t play very well,” coach Travis Taylor said. “We don’t have much height, so we don’t get a lot of rebound baskets. When we don’t shoot well, we’re in trouble.”
Casey Myers was the only Windsor player in double figures. The senior had 11, seven of those in the first half.
Windsor’s record drops to 3-3.
Piner, winning its fourth straight, improves to 6-4. The Prospectors host the Sonoma County Classic beginning Thursday.