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Boys basketball roundup: Raiders split in Vegas, Cougs fall in San Diego
by Tribune Staff
Dec 27, 2013 | 1144 views | 0 0 comments | 16 16 recommendations | email to a friend | print
The Spanish Springs and Reed boys hoops teams did not have as much luck on the road Friday as the girls, going a combined 1-2 in their respective tournaments.

Aliso Niguel 62, Spanish Springs 51

Spanish Springs coach Kyle Penney called Friday “just one of those days.”

His Cougars never really got going and fell 62-51 to Aliso Niguel (south of Los Angeles) in the second day of the Torrey Pines Classic in San Diego.

Spanish Springs fell to 5-6 on the season while Aliso Niguel improved to 10-3.

“We just didn’t have it today,” Penney said. “We were out of sync, out of flow, no feel really for how the game was being played and we just couldn’t get over the hump.”

The Cougars took a brief 22-19 late in the second half before going into the locker room behind 30-22 and never managed to grab the lead back.

The loss came despite 25 points from Kenny Meyer who also passed out three assists and chipped in five steals. Jake Longero was the only other Cougar to finish in double digits with 13 points.

“We were just really out of sync. It was uncharacteristic of what we expected,” Penney said. “It was a game that we think we for sure could have had. We just didn’t have it. We simply didn’t have it.”

Trailing 30-22 at the half, Spanish Springs was outscored 11-5 in the third quarter before slightly outscoring the Wolverines, 24-21, in the fourth.

No coach ever wants to lose but Penney found plenty of positives to take from Friday’s loss.

“We are here (San Diego) for a reason,” Penney said. “We come to these tournaments to get exposed and go through these situations. As much as you want to win every game, it’s not necessarily good for you either when you get into league, what our league looks like it’s going to play out to be.

“As long as we take the right steps from losing than we’ll be OK.”

The Cougars play Ocean View at 9:30 a.m. Saturday.

Las Vegas 60, Reed 37

Reed coach Dustin Hall said Las Vegas was the best team his Raiders have played this year, resulting in the Raiders biggest loss of the season.

“They were a tough matchup for us, they are long and athletic,” Hall said. “But we just, offensively, it was our worst performance. We got a lot of good looks, got a lot going at the rim, a lot of open jumpers and we just couldn’t get the ball to fall.”

The Raiders trailed 24-14 at the half and neither team scored the first three minutes of the second half before Las Vegas slowly pulled away. Hall said Reed trailed by 12-15 points most of the second half and the 23-point differential at the end of the game was the largest of the game.

As much as the Raiders struggled on the offensive side of the court, they fought on the defensive side. Reed held the Wildcats (8-0) to 60 points after they were averaging 80 points a contest.

“We found out a lot about ourselves. Defensively, we really fought, much better than the day before (59-46 win against Lathorp of Anchorage, Alaska),” Hall said.

Jamel Ramos was the only Raider to finish in double digits with 17 points.

Reed 55, Arroyo Grande 47

The Raiders (7-3) didn’t sulk on their afternoon loss long.

Led by Alonzo Vega and Trae Wells (15 points each), the Raiders topped the school located north of Santa Barbara to finish 2-1 in their pool in Las Vegas High’s Winter Break tournament and advance into the gold bracket.

The 24-team tournament was broken into six, four-team pools. Each bracket winner advanced to the platinum bracket, second-place team to the gold bracket, the third-place team into the silver bracket and the last-place team into the bronze bracket.

The Raiders led 20-16 at the half before the lead changed hands a number of times in the third quarter. Reed took the lead for good early in the fourth quarter when Vega scored 10 consecutive points for the Blue and Gold.

But for the second-straight game, Hall was most impressed with his group’s defense.

“We really battled defensively again and that was kind of what got us the win,” Hall said.

Hall said he challenged his players in the locker room after scoring 20 points in the first half and was pleased with how they responded in the second half, scoring 35.

“That (35 second-half points) is a little more indicative of who we are,” Hall said. “But it all started with our defense.”

Reed plays Silverado at 9 a.m. Saturday in the win-or-fly-home portion of the tournament.

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