ORANGE -- A strong finish to the second half propelled the Orange Coast College men's basketball team to a solid 90-83 Orange Empire Conference win over host Santiago Canyon on Wednesday night.
Coast (11-7, 2-1 in OEC) trailed throughout the first and didn't get its first lead of the game until a made 3-pointer by Lloyd Wright with 13:34 remaining in the second half put the Pirates in front, 51-50.
From there, the Pirates and Hawks (14-5, 1-2) battled back and forth, right down the game's final two minutes of play. There, Coast pulled away from the hosts with nine straight points, turning an 81-80 nail-biter into a 90-80 advantage with just 18 seconds left.
A bucket by Kupaa Harrison, a Wright 3-pointer and clutch free throws by Jumoke Walker and Wright capped off the 9-0 run, giving the Pirates led cushion they needed to come away with a key conference road win.
OCC's big-three of Harrison (22 pints, eight rebounds), Wright (20 points, five assists) and Joshua Davis (17 points, five rebounds) came through, while off the bench, Rachaun Echols added nine points in 11 minutes, while Walker tossed in eight points and Montana Garcia dished out a team-best seven assists.
Coast will return to the Peterson Gym on Friday against Saddleback, beginning at 5 p.m.