So much for the spacious confines, the setting, the stakes and any nerves.
Aside from some early jitters, two underdog girls basketball teams bent on turning the Sac-Joaquin Section Division I playoffs upside down produced as good a championship game as has been played at Power Balance Pavilion/Arco Arena.
Fourth-seeded Kennedy had just a bit more in the tank and toppled sixth-seeded Oak Ridge 62-58 in double overtime Saturday night.
There were big shots, crucial free throws and huge plays throughout in a gym notorious for defusing hot teams and derailing seasons.
And there were plenty of pileups in scrambles for loose balls, as neither team was willing to yield in a thoroughly entertaining contest.
"It was a great effort, and everyone dug deep," Kennedy coach Dave Parsh said. "We were in a constant battle and finally pushed it over the top."
The Cougars (23-8) earned their fifth section championship, all since 2001. Parsh collected his third section title, having won two banners with St. Francis in the 1990s.
Kennedy also was the only non-No. 1 seed to win a Sac-Joaquin Section championship over the weekend.
Kennedy didn't win the Metro Conference D-III champion Sacramento did. But the Cougars won the de facto Delta River League, beating DRL teams St. Francis, top-seeded Pleasant Grove and Oak Ridge on its way to its eighth Northern California D-I tournament berth in 11 years.
Lynette Johnson, the humble Kennedy star, had 24 points and nine rebounds.
Steady floor leader Lori Wong had 11 points, and unsung Katie Lee scored nine, including two three-pointers during a 9-0 run late in the fourth quarter.
Jenn Hoffman made six three-pointers and scored 24 points for Oak Ridge (23-8). Hoffman made two free throws to force the first overtime at 49-49.
Johnson had a buzzer-beating putback to force the second overtime at 54-54. Then Johnson's three-pointer with 1:05 to go gave Kennedy the lead for good, 60-58, and Mele Kolokihakaufisi hit two free throws with 31 seconds left to close the scoring.
Parsh said the Cougars surged late in the season as they shared the ball, upped their defense and generally bought into the team concept.
"This is my family," Johnson said, pointing to her teammates. "I love them so much. We had our ups and downs . We can keep winning if we fight hard and keep playing together."
While Kennedy hopes for a No. 2 or 3 seed in the NorCal playoffs, Oak Ridge also advances.