LA SERNA 73, PIONEER 55
WHITTIER — There is a misconception that the La Serna High School boys basketball team is Cedric Sobers and friends.The Lancers showed otherwise Friday.
Walter Franco scored 13 points, Daniel Canales had 12 and La Serna demonstrated its depth with a 73-55 victory over host Pioneer in a game for sole possession of first place in the Del Rio League.
Izaaak Mills and Jacob Fuller had 11 points each for the Lancers (18-2, 4-0). Sobers, saddled with foul trouble before fouling out in the fourth quarter, had nine points.
Khieem Williams had 17 points and Mike Vasquez 13 for the Titans (15-4, 3-1).
La Serna also got nine points from Rene Favela, who was 3 of 4 from 3-point range.
The game turned during the second quarter after La Serna outscored Pioneer 24-11 to lead 38-21 at halftime.
The Lancers, getting a 3-pointer by Canales and a three-point play by Franco, opened the quarter with a 16-7 surge for a 30-17 lead with 2:06 left in the half.
Mills followed with a layup and 3-pointer to key an 8-0 blitz to close the half for a 38-21 advantage.
“We started hitting our 3-point shots,” Franco said. “We locked up on defense, and then we just sailed from there.”
La Serna all but sealed it by beginning the third quarter with a 7-0 run for a 45-21 lead with 6:05 left.
Pioneer, getting 12 points in the second half from Williams, twice cut it to 14 in the fourth quarter before Sobers converted a three-point play and Fuller made a layup to seal it at 65-48 with 3:20 remaining.
La Serna’s Walter Franco: “We have a lot of guys who can play. We have two sophomores who can play, four juniors and we’re led by nine seniors. We’re comfortable putting anybody in. This game was big. They were 3-0; we were 3-0. We needed to get the win, and now we’re up one game on everybody in the Del Rio.”
— Stephen Ramirez
SAN GABRIEL 71, SCHURR 70, OT
SAN GABRIEL — One season ago, the San Gabriel-Schurr High School boys basketball matchup was an afterthought in the Almont League as the two teams struggled through a difficult year.Fast-forward to this season and these two squads are enjoying similar successful turnarounds. It might be fitting then that they would play a tight game that needed a little more time to figure out a winner.
San Gabriel’s Preston Savayong, however, wasted no time as he sank a free throw with 3.7 seconds left in overtime to give the Matadors a thrilling 71-70 victory over the visiting Spartans on Friday night.
The win gives the Matadors (15-4, 4-0) sole possession of first place.
Savayong’s game-winning free-throw was set up due to a mistake by Schurr (15-6, 3-1). San Gabriel’s Andrew Canizal banked a 3-pointer from the top of the key to tie the game 70-70 with 5 seconds left in overtime.
After the Spartans in-bounded the ball, a timeout was called. However, Schurr didn’t have any left. That resulted in a technical foul which gave San Gabriel two free throws plus the ball.
Savayong finished the game with a team-high 23 points. That 23rd point proved be tougher than it looked. He missed the first free throw but then hit the second to give his team the victory.
Jaedyn Bonilla led Schurr with a game-high 25 points. He hit big shots and free throws. He nailed a 3-pointer to give his team a 56-55 lead with 3:23 left in the fourth quarter. He also hit all four of his free-throw attempts in overtime. The last free-throw gave Schurr a 70-67 lead with 22.3 seconds left.
San Gabriel coach Jason Meador: “We weren’t sure if he was going to shoot because he was cramping. I asked him if he could go and he said he was good so we let him shoot. He is our best free-throw shooter.”
— Donald Morrison
Del Rey League
St. Bernard 52, Cantwell-Sacred Heart of Mary 47
Del Rio League
Whittier 63, El Rancho 60
Santa Fe 78, California 49
Sonora 67, Fullerton 62
La Habra 70, Fullerton 48
Whittier Christian 60, Village Christian 57
Santa Fe League
St. Paul 72, SPSMA 30
Montebello 48, Bell Gardens 27
Del Rio League
El Rancho 48, Whittier 28
California 58, Santa Fe 23
Pioneer 61, La Serna 52
Troy 58, Sonora 46
La Habra 71, Fullerton 16
Village Christian 49, Whittier Christian 41