Mar 2, 2014 - By Randy Tucker, Sports WriterDubois came within two points of the Class 1-A West regional boys championship and finished with two wins against a single loss in tournament play to earn the third seed from the West at next week's state tournament in Casper.
The Rams fell 61-59 to top-seeded Little Snake River on Friday, but rebounded Saturday morning to take care of the Farson Eden Pronghorns 59-45.
Because Dubois already has opened tournament play with a win over Encampment on Thursday, and Encampment edged Cokeville in overtime on a 30-foot buzzer beater by Harold Jackson, there was not a third-place game. The Rams earned the thirspot by virtue of the earlier win.
Saturday's game featured a tremendous size advantage for the Rams, but it was the play of Ryan Eulberg that lifted DHS into further postseason play.
The 5-9 guard had the best game of his career, handling the ball well, taking opportune shots, and getting the ball inside to Walker Carrico and Austin TharpEulberg finished with a dozpoints as well.
"Ryan had the game of his life," Dubois head coach Mike Carrico said.
The Rams started slow, and it looked like it would be close contest with the Pronghorns for the duration.
But Eulberg hit a driving layup with 1:15 remaining in the half to give Dubois a 23-15 lead, followed by a follow shot by Tharp, and ending with a Eulberg steal and layup at the buzzer.
The Rams tallied four points in just five seconds to take a double-digit lead into the half.
Tharp, Carrico and Nathan Moore all scored quickly to open the second half and a Farson timeout with 3:43 failed to end the onslaught.
Eulberg executed a perfect give-and-go to Carrico, and the Rams led by 15. Dubois eventually built a 48-27 advantage, largest of the game, on a Moore drive. Farson rallied in the final period to close the game to an 11-point margin. Lyndon Lehman and Andrew Amrine hit back-to-back treys to close the gap, but Dubois recovered and pulled away in the final minutes on a pair of Kolter Leseberg drives to hold on for the win.
The Rams almost pulled off the upset in Friday, holding a three- to four-point lead in the fourth quarter before the Little Snake River Rattlers rallied.
Trailing by two, the game came down to a long 3-point attempt by the 6-foot-6 Tharp that rolled out of the rim at the buzzer.
Dubois returns to the state tournament for the first time since 2005, when the Rams fell in the Class 2-A third/fourth place game.
Dubois opens play at the Casper Events Center at noon against Guernsey-Sunrise.
DUBOIS 12 17 16 14 - 59
LITTLE SNAKE RIVER 20 12 10 19 -- 61
Dubois - Austin Tharp 9 3-5 21, Walker Carrico 3 0-0 6, Kolter Leseberg 8 (2) 2-4 24, Nathan Moore 2(1) 1-2 8. Totals 22 (3) 6-11 59
Little Snake River -- Slater Kaisler 3 0-2 6, Tanner Jensen 6 4-5 16, Gabrielle Sillari 10(3) 5-9 34, Jordan Perkin 1 3-4 5. Totals 20 (3) 12-20 61
DUBOIS 12 15 21 11 - 59
FARSON EDEN 10 7 10 18 -- 45
Dubois - Tharp 7 1-6 15, Carrico 5 1-6 11, Ryan Eulberg 4 4-7 12, Kolter Leseberg 3 7-7 13, Nathan Moore 4 0-0 8. Totals 23 13-28 59
Farson Eden -- Lyndon Lehman 4 (1) 3-5 14, Kelton Broadhead 1 3-5 5, Gavin Winn 2 -0 4, Isaac Orozco 1 1-2 3, Neale Jones 2 3-4 7, Andrew Amrine 2 (1) 0-0 7, Jared McMakin 1 3-4 5. Totals 13 (2) 13-20 45
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