The Inland Insider took a look at Glendora-Ayala after Tartans coach Mike LeDuc talked about the teams’ playoff chances following a plethora of injuries. Don’t count out the Tartans just yet, maybe their 18th win of the season will spark something.
Chino HIlls Tom wote: In what has been, at times, a frustrating season ended on a positive note for the Glendora Tartans after they avenged an earlier season loss to the Ayala Bulldogs Thursday night by getting their 18th win of the year 50-48. On senior night the Tartans started quick behind the hot outside shooting of Brett Helberg, who scored 8 of his game high 18 points in the first quarter, racing to a 7-0 lead and ending the 1st quarter up 12-8.
In the second quarter Helberg’s 6 and Calvin Smiths 4 points paced the Tartans, but the Bulldogs hung tough and were able to close to 26-20 at the half. The game stayed close with Glendora holding leads thru the 3rd quarter and into the 4th, where Ayala made a run. With the Tartans leading 35-31, the Bulldogs used a 7-2 run to take their first and only lead of the game at 38-37, with 4:25 left in the game. But that’s when the Seniors for Glendora took the game over, using a 10-0 run, behind Michael Doering who converted 5 out of 6 free throws ( 7 pts total), and Calvin Smith who had 6 of his 13 points in the 4th qtr.
With the hot outside shooting of Helberg, it was able to free up Calvin Smith and give him more room on the court, said Helberg ” It really opens up the floor, and spreads things out so he can penetrate inside”, which led to free throws and lay-ups. When Smith was able to convert a 3 point play after being fouled underneath with 2:34 left, the Tartans had a 44-38 lead and had to weather a final run by the Bulldogs, who used a pressing defense and 3 point shooting to keep things interesting until the end. When asked about his final regular season game Smith said he was “feeling much better” after being under the weather and when asked about the next challenge for the Tartans Smith replied “We always seem to find a way to have a run in the play-offs and be successful” He added ” The win really boosted our confidence and we have high spirits heading into the play-offs”
Sophomore Matthew Ponce led Ayala with 14 points, who finished their season 6-4 in league and 16-11 overall, Glendora finished their final Sierra League campaign at 5-5 and 18-8 overall.