Boys Hoops: Damien wins big over J.W. North, 53-36; Chris Reyes named tournament MVP

By Fred J. Robledo
After blowing past locals Wilson, Northview and Rowland, Damien took care of business in the championship of the 58th annual Covina High School Christmas Tournament against one of the beasts of the Inland Empire, knocking off Riverside’s J.W. North 53-36 on Thursday.

Damien’s St. Mary’s-bound forward/center Chris Reyes had another
big night, finishing with 19 points, 12 rebounds and four blocks, which included a thunderous two-handed dunk early in the fourth that punctuated his dominating performance around the rim.

“They’re a big, physical team, it was nice playing the way we did against them,” said Reyes, named the tournament MVP. “We played a game like this last year in a tournament against Harvard-Westlake. It’s good playing these type teams.”

Spartans sharpshooter Jared Dizon was deadly too. He buried three
3-pointers and finished with a game-high 20 points.

Damien improved to 13-1 and J.W. North, which received a game-high 15 points from Aaron Peck, dropped to 10-3. (To continue click thread)

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Girls Hoops: Covina no match against Wilson in championship of the Rowland tourament

Matching up teams from the same league for a tournament championship can get some surprising results.

The Lady Raiders Christmas Classic girls basketball tournament at Rowland High School was no exception.

Defending Valle Vista League champion Wilson knocked off preseason league favorite Covina, ranked second in CIF-Southern Section Division 3A, 45-18 for the title Thursday night.

The Wildcats defense held high-scoring Ashli Badorf to three points. Badorf was averaging 18 points per game coming into the contest.

“It wasn’t what I expected,” Wildcats coach Tracy Calton said. “They’re very tough inside and they like to drive to the basket. We did a good job of packing in our zone and took that away from them.”

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Girls Hoops: Duarte’s Yasmine Wilson dominates in Glendora tourney title game, finishing with 27 points and 23 rebounds in win over Eagle Rock

Duarte High School point guard Imari Brown admits she was not on top of her game.

It did not matter. Yasmine Wilson was there to rescue the Falcons.

The senior center scored four consecutive baskets in a key stretch of the fourth quarter to propel Duarte to the Glendora Tournament championship for the second consecutive year, holding off Eagle Rock, 66-63, on Thursday night.

“We’ve been trying to do that for the last three years,” Duarte coach Mark Smith said of getting the ball to Wilson.

“Normally we’ve got Imari Brown and she goes wild. They had her number and that’s OK. We have other weapons.”

The Falcons took advantage of the Eagles’ lack of height. Wilson scored 27 points with all of her field goals made from underneath the basket. She also had 23 rebounds.

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Duarte’s Imari Brown scores 31 points to lead the Falcons to a 55-37 win over Glendora to reach Thursday’s championship against Eagle Rock

By Fred J. Robledo, Staff Writer
It’s difficult to understand why the Duarte High School girls basketball wasn’t ranked in the CIF-Southern Section Division 4AA preseason poll.
All the Falcons did last year was finish 25-3, advance to the divisional quarterfinals, earn an invitation to the state playoffs and return all five starters, including Tribune first-team selection Imari Brown, who nearly averaged a quadruple-double as a sophomore. And despite a sore ankle, the junior is at it again.
Brown finished with 31 points, seven rebounds, eight steals and three assists in Duarte’s 55-37 victory over host Glendora to finish undefeated in Pool B of the Glendora girls basketball tournament on Wednesday, earning the Falcons a ticket to tonight’s championship against Eagle Rock at 7:30 p.m., at Glendora High School. (To continue click thread).

Glendora Girls Basketball Holiday Tournament
Monday’s round-robin results
Eagle Rock 59, La Serna 49
Schurr 40, Claremont 29
Duarte 65, Hoover 32
Glendora 37, Charter Oak 35
Tuesday’s round-robin
Duarte 57, Charter Oak 43
Eagle Rock 44, Schurr 40
La Serna 44, Claremont 39
Glendora 61, Hoover 29
Wednesday’s round-robin
Eagle Rock vs. Claremont, 3 p.m.
Schurr vs. La Serna, 4:30 p.m.
Hoover vs. Charter Oak, 6 p.m.
Duarte vs. Glendora, 7:30 p.m.
Championship on Thursday, 7:30 p.m., at Glendora

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Rose Bowl Updates: Wilson is Badgers’ X-Factor


Associated Press photo

As part of our coverage of the 98th Rose Bowl Game, here’s my story on Wisconsin’s Russell Wilson:

LOS ANGELES – There are a lot elements that were key for Wisconsin as the Badgers returned to the Rose Bowl Game
The X-factor is quarterback Russell Wilson, who is not a typical Wisconsin signal caller.
Wilson, a senior transfer from North Carolina State, added athleticism to a position that for years required nothing special, just someone who minimized mistakes while guiding an offense that used its mammoth front line and big running backs such as Ron Dayne and John Clay as focal points.
Wilson, at least for this season, changed that perception.
“The true sign of a great player is someone who can make something out of nothing,” said Wisconsin coach Bret Bielema, whose Badgers face Oregon in the 98th Rose Bowl Game on Monday. “A lot of times it might be a call offensively where the scheme for the success of that play shuts down and you have to make a change.
“Russell has made changes this year on first, second, third and even fourth down that have allowed us to stay alive and make a play.”
Wilson’s biggest audible came not at Camp Randall Stadium, but off the field.
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