By Eric Terrazas, SGVN
LA HABRA – Maranatha High fell behind early but regrouped with a strong defense that lifted the Minutemen to a 46-41 Olympic League boys basketball victory at Whittier Christian on Tuesday.
After the Heralds took a 24-20 lead at halftime, the visiting Minutemen regained control by holding Whittier Christian scoreless in the third quarter for a 29-24 lead entering the fourth quarter.
Jeremy Major scored a game-high 14 points to lead the Minutemen (17-5 overall, 3-1 league), who improved their position in the Olympic League standings.
“We started out really good,” Major said. “Our depth was a little low. Some of our young guys came in and they fought hard. We played as a team and we made the right decisions at the right time.”
Caylan Swinnie also played a key role for the Minutemen in scoring 13 points.
Ryan Esslinger had nine points to lead Whittier Christian (11-11, 0-4), which faces an uphill battle in league play.
Major started Maranatha’s third-quarter run with a three-point play. The Minutemen then took a 25-24 on Michael DeMeester’s jumper.
The Heralds, however, recovered from their scoreless third quarter when Esslinger’s jumper gave Whittier Christian a 34-32 lead.
Swinnie quickly put the Minutemen back out in front to stay when his 3-pointer gave Maranatha a 35-34 advantage.