The Vikings started the game in a hole thanks to an administrative technical foul, which allowed Pasadena to take a 2-0 lead before the opening tip. Those points would prove costly as a game-tying basket from Pasadena’s Tyler Crockom with 7 seconds left sent the game to overtime. The visiting Lancers outscored a cold-shooting LBCC 12-5 in the extra session to pull out the 77-70 win in South Coast Conference action Friday evening in LBCC’s Hall Of Champions.

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“We kept playing and kept making plays,” said Vikings head coach Michael Anderson, whose Vikings have now dropped two straight going back to Wednesday’s 67-62 loss at Mt. SAC, the No. 4 team in the state. “I’m not frustrated about the losses. Those games could’ve gone either way. We’re definitely improving, and come playoff time, nobody is going to be thinking ‘I’m excited to play Long Beach City.’”

Shakeena Benton led the Vikings with 21 points (14 in the second half), while Abbey Goodsell had 16 of her 19 points in the second half. Crystal Cockerham added 10 points and 16 rebounds. Desiree Loving led Pasadena with 20 points.

LBCC trailed 33-27 at the break but fought back to lead by as many as 6 in the second half. The Vikings missed three key free throws down the stretch with a two-point lead, setting up Crockom’s chance to tie it. In all, Long Beach was just 10/23 at the free throw line, worse than their 10/22 mark from 3-point range.

It was a matchup of two of the top five teams in the state, with LBCC (19-4, 6-2 in South Coast Conference) ranked No. 3 and Pasadena (18-5, 7-1 SCC) No. 5. The Lancers are now 2-0 against Long Beach this season, winning 69-64 in an overtime game back in December.

Sports Guy Mike Guardabascio has been writing professionally for a decade, with his work published in dozens of Southern California magazines and newspapers. He's won numerous awards and is the author of the historical book "Football in Long Beach."

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