By Mark Schremmer
Globe Sports Writer
Riverton’s 6-foot-3 senior Dylan Weaver is more comfortable taking the ball inside.
However, he appeared at ease shooting outside while draining a 3-pointer in the fourth quarter that helped propel the Rams to a 39-36 win over the Galena Bulldogs in a nonconference game Tuesday night at Riverton High School.
“Normally that’s not my range,” Weaver said. “But I caught the ball in step and I was ready to shoot, so I shot it and it happened to go in.”
The shot gave Riverton a 36-34 lead with 3:22 remaining. Weaver followed the trey with an old-fashioned three-point play to put the Rams up 39-34 with 1:55 left. Galena didn’t recover from the six-point burst, failing to make a field goal in the final minutes.
“That’s a big shot by Dylan,” Riverton coach Zach Martin said. “Out of 20 games in a regular season, you’re going to have games where you have to grind it out and do what it takes to win. Down the stretch, our guys did what it took to win.”
But the Bulldogs certainly didn’t make it easy. Galena forced Riverton into a slow-down game.
“They did a great job of controlling the tempo of the game,” Martin said. “It affected us on the offensive end. It seemed like we wanted to stand on offense as well. We couldn’t get into the flow of things. Give them credit for that.”
Trailing 21-15 with 4:24 left in the first half, Galena (6-3) held the ball until there were two minutes remaining. Galena coach Matt Meyr said he did so since he had three starters with two fouls and because he wanted his players to be more patient.
From that point on, the pace of the game slowed significantly.
“That was our whole goal,” Meyr said. “They are much more of a transition team than we are. They’ve been scoring 60 or 70 points a game, and we held them to 39. That’s pretty good.”
Galena controlled the game in the third quarter and went on a 12-0 run to take a 27-24 lead.
Weaver and Landon North combined for 13 of Riverton’s final 15 points for the win. The duo tied for the lead in points with 11 each. Freshman Grant North added nine.
Junior guard Deven Newman led the Bulldogs with 19.
Riverton (6-2) will host Northeast on Friday for homecoming. Galena will travel to face Southeast.
RIVERTON girls 48, GALENA 45, OT
Riverton senior Molly McDonald scored only two points during the first 30 minutes of regulation. However, it was McDonald’s eight points down the stretch that carried the Rams to an overtime win over the Bulldogs.
McDonald hit a jumper to tie the game at 38 with 1:48 remaining. She followed that with two three-point plays to help Riverton (3-5) secure the victory.
“She needed a game like that,” Riverton coach Will Mallatt said. “For the most part, she missed her freshman and sophomore years. So last year was really her first year playing. I tell them all that their time is coming and that they can score. She really stepped up and made some nice plays.”
It was a game of runs early as the Rams jumped out to a 9-0 lead. Galena responded by outscoring Riverton 23-4 the rest of the first half.
The Rams answered back with a 13-4 advantage in the third quarter and finally tied the game on McDonald’s jumper in the fourth quarter.
Senior MacKenzie Dunbar led Riverton with 14 points and fueled a defense that forced Galena into 22 turnovers. Madison Hull added 12, and McDonald finished with 10.
Galena was led by Abby Shelton with 12. Haley Hall, who made a shot to push the game into overtime, contributed 10.