Port Townsend High School coach Tom Webster had one timeout left Dec. 5 when Crosspoint freshman Thunderr Doty drilled a go-ahead 3-pointer with 38 seconds remaining in the nonleague boys basketball game at Bruce Blevins Gymnasium.
The Redhawks trailed by two in what had been a tight game throughout, and Webster said he was ready to stop the action to draw up a play when his team crossed midcourt.
But when Webster saw senior guard Noa Montoya with the ball in a wide-open space, he let the final sequence unfold.
The hometown crowd erupted when Montoya splashed a 3-pointer from the top of the key with 19 seconds left, and Port Townsend (3-2) held on to beat the Class 2B Warriors, 62-61.
“I didn’t see anyone in front of me or behind me, so I saw it as an opportunity and I took it,” said Montoya, a 6-foot-3 junior guard who made four 3-pointers and finished with a game-high 26 points.
He wasn’t sure when it left his hand.
“I’m not going to lie,” he said. “That last shot, I didn’t know where it was going.”
Montoya, who added 10 rebounds and five steals, said he saw the ball drifting right of the center of the rim after he let it go, and he thought he might miss it.
“I had faith I would make it,” he said. “But that shot didn’t feel like the other ones.”
Port Townsend led 57-51 with 3:21 to play when Montoya hit a shot from the baseline after the Redhawks broke Crosspoint’s full-court press.
The Warriors (0-2) answered quickly when 6-5 senior center Alex Weirth converted a field goal and Crosspoint immediately forced a turnover. Senior forward Derrin Doty Jr. hit the second of two free throws to cut it to 57-54.
After the teams traded free throws, Port Townsend came up empty on a possession, and Weirth, who finished with a team-high 24 points, put back his own miss to make it 59-58.
The Redhawks turned the ball over and gave Crosspoint a chance to take the lead, but the Warriors lost possession on a fast break with about a minute to go.
After a Crosspoint timeout, Doty, a 5-6 freshman guard, stunned the crowd with his 3-ball from the corner, and that set the stage for Montoya and the Redhawks.
“They’re a playoff team, no doubt,” Webster said of the Warriors. “They have two of the best players we’ve seen all year.”
Nathan Taylor, a 6-1 senior forward, sank five 3-pointers and finished with 21 points for Crosspoint. And while Taylor burned the Redhawks from the outside, Weirth was a force inside, recording six of his nine field goals after halftime.
Weirth’s points were in part the result of Montoya being in foul trouble. Port Townsend, which likes to play man-to-man defense, switched to play more 2-3 zone in the second half, both to contain Taylor’s range and to protect Montoya from further foul trouble.
“We had to spread out our whole defense,” Port Townsend senior guard Jaden Watkins said.
This season, the Redhawks returned three varsity players, including Montoya and Watkins, and they have eight seniors on the roster.
“They may not have varsity experience, but we have a lot of guys we’ve known for a long time,” said Watkins, who finished with 15 points, nine rebounds and four assists.
Nico Winegar, a 6-1 senior forward, scored nine points, grabbed seven rebounds and tallied five assists against Crosspoint, and 6-2 senior guard Kavi Baabahar added six points.
Port Townsend led 17-15 after the first quarter, and the game was tied 27-27 at halftime. Crosspoint briefly took a six-point lead at 35-29 early in the third, but the Redhawks called timeout with 6:32 left in the period and went on a 6-0 run, with Watkins scoring twice in transition and Baabahar tying the game with a putback.
The game was tied three times in the third quarter and had eight total lead changes, including twice inside the final minute.
Port Townsend 62,
Crosspoint Academy 61
Crosspoint — Thunderr Doty 6, Harrison McArdle 1, Derrin Doty, Jr. 9, Nathan Taylor 21, Alex Weirth 24.
Port Townsend — Jaden Watkins 15, Kavi Baabahar 6, Nico Winegar 9, Noa Montoya 26, Tao Johnston 1, Kuba Krol 5.
PT splits pair
Montoya scored a team-high 24 points and Cole Crawford added 11 points on Dec. 3 as the Redhawks won at Bremerton, 51-46.
Port Townsend trailed by 15 points after the first quarter on Dec. 7 and lost a nonleague game at Forks, 60-42.
Watkins led the Redhawks against Forks with 16 points and five steals, and Crawford contributed nine points and six rebounds.
Port Townsend opened 1A Olympic League play after press time Dec. 11 at Klahowya and will host Chimacum at 5:45 p.m. on Dec. 14.