Getting through the Division 4 Central Section championship game was, both figuratively and literally, too tall a task for Delano to overcome.
Kingsburg's inside duo of Jose Martinez and Logan Byrum were too much for the Tigers to handle, as the top-seeded Vikings out-rebounded Delano 57-22 to win 71-59 in the boys basketball section title game in Fresno Saturday afternoon.
Martinez, who stands 6-foot-5 with very long arms, was a terror inside, scoring 13 points to go along with 21 rebounds, 13 of which came on the offensive end.
When Martinez was off the floor, the Vikings countered with Byrum, a tank-sized 6-7 center who had an 11-point, 12-rebound double-double of his own.
The Tigers also had to deal with some bad luck, as Kingsburg scored on buzzer-beaters to end the first three quarters, the most shocking when Nate Towsley hit a shot just in front of the half-court line in the second quarter, giving the Vikings a 40-23 halftime lead.
Despite the noticeable disadvantage, Delano coach Aaron Estrada wasn't interested in using the Vikings' size as an explanation for why his team lost.
"(I'm) never go to say they're too this, too that," Estrada said. "I don't care about size. That's an excuse."
The Tigers showed resolve in the second half, getting as close as 44-36 in the third quarter behind an 8-0 run. Thomas Perez was the catalyst for the comeback, scoring 18 of his game-high 27 points in the second half.
"In Delano, we don't quit," Estrada said. "If you play basketball, football, baseball at Delano High School, you do not quit. You just keep playing until that final buzzer...and that's it. That's our mentality. Never stop playing."