Los Altos beats Walnut 55-52 to claim Covina boys basketball tournament; Wilson wins second tourney title; West Covina falls in Nogales title game

WILSON BOYS BEAT WHITTIER FOR SECOND TOURNEY TITLE: They don’t give out league or divisional boys basketball championships in December, but if they did, Wilson High School might be on the top of the list.
No area team appears to be playing better than the Wildcats in December.
Justin Chan scored 21 points and Kyle Price had 14 as Wilson won its second tournament of the month with a 55-50 victory over host Whittier to claim the fifth Whittier Holiday Tournament at the Bob Chandler Sports Complex.
Jared Kawamoto also had seven points and eight rebounds for Wilson, which improved to 13-2. Dominic Saldana had 21 points and Anthony Rios 12 for Whittier, which slipped to 11-2.
“The boys have been playing very well,” Wilson coach Willie Allen said. “They’ve been exceeding our expectations and rising to the challenge. We’ve played some good teams, and when the pressure is there, they make big plays.”

Covina Boys Basketball tournament
Monday’s semifinals

Los Altos 71, Cajon 69
Walnut 58, Bonita 67
Tuesday’s Championship
Los Altos 55, Walnut 52

LASHOTCOVINA TOURNEY CHAMPIONSHIP: The Los Altos boys basketball team fended off a comeback from Walnut on Tuesday night to win the Covina Tournament with a 55-52 victory in a game between two Hacienda League teams.
Christian Espinoza had 17 points for the Conquerors (9-3), along with seven assists and five rebounds, and was named tournament MVP. He was guarded all night by Zuri Williams, who limited him to seven shots in the first three quarters. Willaims had 15 points of his own, along with seven assists.
Los Altos led by as much as 10 in the third quarter, but a pair of consecutive 3-pointers by Jefferey Huang in the final three minutes of the game gave the Mustangs their first lead since the first quarter. Williams assisted on both of those treys and made two of his own in the final quarter.

COVINA TOURNEY SEMIFINALS: Los Altos guard Christian Espinoza tallied 30 points in the first three quarters, but his only five points in the fourth quarter, which all came in the last 30 seconds of the game at the free-throw line, were what clinched the Conquerors’ 71-69 victory over Cajon Monday night in the Covina Tournament semifinals.
Espinoza finished the game with 35 points, and made 14 of 18 free throws with six rebounds and four assists. The senior guided his team to a 21-4 run that carried over in the third quarter after a 13-3 run to end the first half.

Nogales Boys Basketball tournament
Monday’s semifinals

Corona Santiago 70, Alta Loma 54
West Covina 70, Montebello 65
Tuesday’s Championship
Corona Santiago 78, West Covina 68

NOGALES TOURNEY FINAL: The West Covina High School boys basketball team gave it everything it had in the 50th Annual Nogales High Christmas Tournament championship game, but fell short to a much taller Santiago of Corona team, 78-68, Tuesday night.
With West Covina (8-6) holding a six point lead late in the third quarter, 53-47, Santiago (12-1) went on a 9-0 run at the end of the quarter to lead by three, 56-53, and never trailed the rest of the way.
The Bulldogs, who were led by all-tournament sophomore guard Nick Hart (game-high 27 points), got within five points, 68-63 with 1:51 remaining, but Santiago built up an insurmountable 10-point lead, 73-63, with just over a minute to play in the game.
“We were right in that game,” West Covina assistant coach Chris Lopez said. “A couple of baskets go in and we were right there.

NOGALES TOURNEY SEMIFINALS: The West Covina High School boys basketball team held off a furious comeback by Montebello and held on to win 70-65 in a semifinal game of the 50th Annual Nogales Christmas Tournament on Monday night. Trailing by as many as 20 points early in the fourth quarter, the Oilers (6-6) outscored West Covina (8-5) 30-15 in the final eight minutes. The Bulldogs will play Corona Santiago (11-1), a 70-54 winner over Alta Loma, tonight at 6:30 p.m. for the tournament championship.

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