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The Catalina Islander
Avalon, California
January 9, 2015     The Catalina Islander
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January 9, 2015

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The boys varsity team played 15 games in past month BY STEVE HALL The Avalon Boys Varsity Basketball Team has been pre- paring for their upcoming league schedule by playing against tough competition in the preseason. The Lancers have survived this difficult part of their schedule and hopefully have improved by acquiring many of the skills that their opponents have displayed against them. Avalon has played 15 games in the past month and has been able to observe what many successful programs do to be successful. After traveling to Hesperia, California the Lancers returned home to host the 23rd Annual Catalina Classic from Dec. 18 to Dec. 20. The Lancers did not win the tournament but they did compete well, winning two games and los- ing two games. In game 1 of the tournament, the Lancers fell to Vaughn High School by a score of 69-57. From page 4 New Year's Eve event at the Casino was up from prior year (525 plus band and volunteers), even after the storm. "We had only seven unclaimed reservations and two cancellations. We were contacted by a private 6i~ater brifiging a gr~up~of 'ten people and encouraged them: to travel by Catalina Express instead. Stores/restaurants on (Crescent Avenue) were closed for much of the6 day so no doubt some lost rev- enue resulted?' The Avalon Lancers Boys Varsity Basketball team and Coach Steve Hall. (Photo courtesy Steve Hall) The Lancers were led by Danny Jimenez with 16 points, Oscar Bastida with 14 points, and Eduardo Pedroza with 10 points. The Lancers had too many turn- overs and appeared a bit nervous playing before their home crowd for the first time this year. In fact the Lancers have played 40 of their last 60 games on the road over the past 3 seasons and seem to have forgotten what a home court advantage can really do for a team. Hopefully we can get that island pride back this season. In game 2 on Friday evening, Dec. 19, against Wildwood, the Lancers came out less nervous and more animated, ready to inspire the crowd with their quality play and came away with a 57-37 victory. The Lancers played much better on defense :and reMueed their :turnovers and mistakes. DaQny Jimenez led all scores with i9 points. Harrison Hobbs added 9 points to the cause and Emmanuel Amezcua contrib- uted 8 points to lead Avalon to the victory. The crowd got into the game and everyone came away excited, especially the team which now realizes the value of estab- lishing a home court advantage. If we can play with effort and emo- tion at home our fans will support us with positive noise and energy. In game 3 of the tournament, on Saturday morning, the Lancers faced San Pedro High School. The Lancers played toe to toe for 2 and half quarters with this Division 1 school but didn't have the horses to finish the race. The Lancers fought until the end but ultimately lost 58-46. They were outscored 14-5 in the 3rd quarter and that's where the game was lost. Danny Jimenez led the team in scoring with 18 points. In the final game of the tournament the Lancers played for the conso- lation and came away with the vic- tory against Wildwood. Avalon's offense is beginniag to improve as they outscored the Huskies 67-46. Danny Jimenez had 21 points and earned an All Tournament trophy for his outstanding play through- out the tournament. Oscar Bastida added 15 points and Ernesto Gomez had 9 points and 8 rebounds. The Lancers took a day off and got right back to work on Monday, Dec. 22nd against AGBU at home. Avalon played lethargic but never gave up. They led for the first 3 quarters but surrendered that lead in the 4th quarter, only to win at the end by a score of 45-42. Emmanuel Amezcua was the hero in this one, draining a 3 pointer with 10 seconds remaining to put Avalon up by 2 points. Danny Jimenez led the Lancers in scoring with 19 points. The following day Avalon got on a boat and traveled to Encino, California to face long time rival Holy Martyrs. This was Avalon's sixth game in six days. The Lancers played poorly against a good team. The final score was 56-28 and the game exposed some of our weak- nesses: rebounding, transition defense and verbal communica- tion. These are areas that can be improved with more focus and attention to the task. The Lancers took a week off from games and began to work on these weaknesses in practice. Then on Monday, Dec. 29, we boarded the Catalina Express and got in our vehicles to travel to Vista. to play in the Tri City Christian Holiday Classic, a three- -day tournament. On day 1 the Lancers played poorly against a quality team and suffered a 65-29 loss. Playing with- out much effort and little cohe- siveness, the Lancers seemed like a dejected bunch after the game. However, basketball is a long sea- son and the competition has been pretty tough thus far. The impor- tant thing is that the players care and have a lot of heart. In game 2 of the tournament that heart and desire began to show and Avalon played their best 4 quarters of basketball this season and emerged victorious against Kern Valley by a score of 50-48. Danny Jimenez went down with an injury for most of the game but Ernesto Gomez came to the rescue, scoring 25 points, grabbing 10 rebounds, blocking 2 shots, and garnering 4 steals. He was all over the court playing a game for the ages. Later the same day Avalon faced Heritage Christian and lost in a defensive thriller 41-39. Jimenez led all scores with 16 points, while Oscar Bastida and Ernesto Gomez added 8 points to the cause. Miguel Bonilla drained two important 3 point shots for Avalon in the 3rd quarter to ignite a rally. This was a quality loss since Heritage is a pretty good team. In game 4 of the tourna- ment Avalon faced ECHS and the Lancers showed that they are an improved team and just about ready for league competition, which begins on Friday, Jan. 16th at Southlands Christian. In this game Avalon faced an inferior opponent but did not play down to their level and came away with a 53-31 victory. This was a total team effort with many players scoring. Eduardo Pedroza led all scores with 11 points, while Miguel Bonilla and Danny Jimenezl added 9 points and Julio Hernandez contributed 8 points to the cause. Oscar Bastida added 6 points and aggressive defense to the team effort, Lefty Adam Fultz found success driving hard to the basket. This was a wonderful tour- nament which provided us with good, fair competition. We were Lancers, Page 7 714-546-2020 For a Saturday clinic appointment at EIMC. O GE COAST center 6 Friday, January 9, 2015 THE CATALINA ISLANDER