The New Southern California Basketball
SoCalHoops High School News

Best In The West Day One: Game No. 9
Long Beach Poly Beats Damien-- (Dec. 27, 1998)

Long Beach Poly 64,  Damien 41

Wesley Stokes (5'-10" Jr. PG) who could just be one of the top five junior players on the west coast, put on a show last night, scoring 21 points including four three-pointers, and he grabbed at least 11 steals that we counted (it was probably more), and dished out at least 7 assists, as Poly just demolished Damien.    The Poly game was played right before the Dominguez game in the West Gym, so you had most of the Dominguez players watching and shouting out to their buddies and rivals at Poly.  The funniest bit was Keilon Fortune, one of Dominguez' point guards, shouting out to Wesley to "get me a trey."   Welsey did just that, right away, hitting what looked like about a 35' three point attempt to open the second half.  Man, he's good. 

Poly came out blazing hot, but they were never really able to blow Damien out, and the Spartans  hung with the Jackrabbits for most of the first half of the first quarter (i.e., about 4 minutes), and then things just started to get away from Damien slowly but surely.  Damien has decent size, but was always just that one step slower to the ball, their shots just one inch away from falling, and their guys just that much out of position for the rebound.  Damien is a good team, and will undoubtedly have lots of success in league play, but they were just outplayed last night.   Poly had incredibly balanced scoring from the rest of the guys, with Kenny Wright (6'-1" Sr. G) scoring 7, Keyon Cooley (6'-7" Sr. F/C) hitting for 7 as well, Marcus Sargent (6'-2" Sr. SG) scoring 5, Shea Anderson (6'-6" Sr. F) scoring 8, Joe Travis (6'-8" Jr. F/C) and David Williams (6'-3" Sr. G)  both hitting for 4 each, Lonnel Penman (6'-3" Jr. G) scoring 6, and Adrian Martin (5'-9" Jr. PG) scoring 2, but he also got some time in the last quarter to develop his point skills, as Wesley retired early after playing for all of the first, second and third quarters, and about 4 minutes of the fourth.  Travis looked good, using his body to block shots, and we think he'll be a big time player in a year and that lots of college coaches will be all over him.

For Damien, well, they are obviously well coached, but they just didn't have the horses. Sam Roy (6'-1" Sr. SG) was the high scorer for the Spartans, with 15,  followed by Robbie Tobin (6'-2" Sr. SG) with11, and Bobby O'Hara (6'-6" Sr. F) with 10.  But from there the scoring fell off, and only three other Damien players scored:  Vincent Minjares (5'-11" Jr. PG) had 6, Scott Therien (6'-6" Jr. F) had 3, and Ryan Giangregoiro (6'-1" Sr. G) had 2. Here's the scoring by quarters:

Damien 7 14 13 7
Poly 13 19 14 18

Long Beach Poly advances to the winnner's bracket and will play LA Washington (which beat Pomona, which was a surprise to more than a few in attendance). The Poly-Washington game will be on Monday at 10:00 a.m. in the East Gym at Long Beach State. 

Damien drops to the consolation side of the bracket, and will move over to Lakewood High School, where they'll play Pomona on Monday at 4:10 p.m.

The Swish Award
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