Austin Archuleta made some noise for Oakdale High’s varsity boys basketball team with his third thrilling three-pointer to bring the Mustangs within five points of visiting East Union with under four minutes to play on Jan. 10.
East Union’s response effectively silenced the rebellion.
Robbie Gleockler beat the shot clock buzzer with a trey well beyond the three-point arc to spark an 11-2 run in the final minute and 40 seconds as the Lancers rallied to batter host Oakdale 50-36.
East Union led by just one point at the half and trailed seven minutes into the third quarter, but erupted with late charges in both of the final periods to steal a Valley Oak League game where both teams badly needed a win.
East Union (13-3 overall) improved to 2-2 in conference play while Oakdale (6-11) slipped to 0-4.
“Anytime you win on the road in the VOL it’s big,” East Union coach Brett Lewis said. “We needed a win right now.”
Gleockler also scored the final points on technical foul free throws after a clubbing swipe from Oakdale’s Spencer Thomas with two seconds remaining.
A Josh Watts put-back allowed Oakdale to lead 24-23 with 4:50 remaining in the third quarter, but a Lancer rally gave East Union eight unanswered points and a 31-24 lead before the fourth.
Oakdale would creep into range in the fourth, but couldn’t combat missed shots and converted Lancer free throws in the final moments.
“We just have to keep getting better,” Oakdale coach Jeremy Fields said after the game. “We just have to keep fighting and working on little things.”
Archuleta led Oakdale with 12 points while Devin Donahue scored 11 with Watts contributing seven. DeWayne Finney (four) and Jaidyn Sheetz (two) also found the net.
The loss was Oakdale’s sixth narrow defeat of the season and represented a serious chance to stun a Lancer team playing without star guard Justin Nieto. Oakdale was downed 62-24 by Weston Ranch on Jan. 8 as well.
The schedule doesn’t get much easier with Manteca (9-7, 2-2) looming on Thursday, Jan. 17 and Sierra waiting on Jan. 19. Oakdale played Lathrop (5-10, 1-3) on Tuesday, but results were not available at press time.
East Union rallied late to push Oakdale into a pair of overtime periods, converting 10 free throws in the second one to best Oakdale’s junior varsity team 51-47 in double overtime on Jan. 10.
Oakdale saw 21 points from Shane Baxter while Octavio Padilla scored 10, Dylan Farquhar eight, Spenser Hager four, Wade Branch two and C.J. Backman two.
The Mustangs were fresh off a 56-42 loss to Weston Ranch despite 12 points by Hager while Brock Whiting, Branch and Baxter all scored eight. Padilla chipped in six.
The Lancer freshmen escaped with a 45-36 win despite a 29-16 swing in Oakdale’s favor in the second half. East Union led 29-11 at the half, but allowed 12 points to both Kario Estell and Nate Van Cleave of Oakdale. Adam Olson and Devich Pennington scored six each for the Mustangs while Robbie Bagley and Pedro Rodriguez each had two.