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Santa Barbara County Tourney:
Dos Pueblos  Loses To St. Joe's--(Dec. 3, 1998)

The Santa Barbara County Tournament is a "tournament" in name only. Ten teams are involved but there are no playoffs and no championship. It counts as a two-game tournament for purposes of CIF scheduling limits but allows teams to play four, prescheduled games, half of them at home.

In the opening round of the "tournament" St. Joseph-Santa Maria  beat Dos Pueblos 73-64 at Dos Pueblos on Tuesday night.   The Chargers struggled and look lik they just won't be able to replace several key players from last year's 25-5 team.   The Knights were just too much for the Chargers.  The St. Joseph team returned four starters from last year's CIF 4-AA championship team.

The Knights jumped out to a 24-18 lead in the first quarter and maintained a 6-to-10 point lead pretty much the rest of the way. Brett Krause had 20 points and 14 rebounds while Matt Cova added 19 points.  It didn't help Dos Pueblos that star guard ShanTay Legans fouled out with 7:38 to play. Legans, the county and Channel League MVP last year, hardly looked tentative, pumping in 15 points in the first quarter and generally showing all the passing flair and quickness which recently landed him a full ride to Cal. He finished with 21 points in the first half and 24 for the game but picked up his fourth foul with 7:45 to play and his fifth seven seconds later on a charge. "My fault,'' Legans told reporters after the game. "My fault. I let my team down tonight with those fouls."

The Santa Barbara News-Press speculated that Legans may have been trying too hard. "He and Alex Jenkins are the only two starters returning for the Chargers, who are hoping to win their third straight Channel League title," the paper reasoned. Jenkins had   5 points, 15 rebounds and 4 blocks.

Besides Legans and Jenkins, the rest of the Chargers were mostly junior varsity players last year.

But St. Joe's felt good about the win. "We're at a good starting point,'' said St. Joseph coach Ed Torres, referring to his four returning starters. "We played well as a team. We beat a quality team from a higher division (2-A)  that made the semis last year. The difference was probably experience. Dos Pueblos will be a good team by January."

One other Charger player had a good game: Junior Brett Holbrook scored 12 of his 16 points in the second half, including a 3-pointer and four straight free throws as Dos Pueblos cut a 46-35 St. Joseph lead to 48-45 with a hustling full-court press. Dos Pueblos even had one possession with a chance to tie, but a free throw by Chris Merlo was followed by a blocked shot and fast break assist by Ryan Smith to Mike Draper as St. Joseph went ahead 51-47. After Legans fouled out, St. Joseph got four straight points by Cova to make it 57-47, but Dos Pueblos rallied briefly with six points from Jenkins and a 3-pointer by Holbrook to cut the margin to 62-58. St. Joseph kept it close for a while by missing several free throws, finishing 19 of 33, but eventually wore the clock and Chargers down.   Draper added 11 points for the Knights while Jason Williams had seven points and eight rebounds.

Dos Pueblos' next game is Thursday at Arroyo Grande while St. Joseph is at Carpinteria.

Santa Barbara 66, Santa Ynez 56--In another first round game between Santa Barbar High and Lompoc High, Tony Freeman led the Santa Barbara Dons to a 66-56 win on Tuesday night. Freeman (6'-3" Sr. SG) poured in 27 points Tuesday night as Santa Barbara High opened its boys basketball season with a 66-56 victory at Lompoc in the Santa Barbara County Tournament. Senior guard Jermon Barnes paced the Braves with 19 points.

Arroyo Grande 51, Santa Ynez 39--Trailing 38-36 with four minutes to play, the Pirates turned the ball over on four of their next five possessions and fell in the opening game of the Santa Barbara County Tournament. Santa Ynez sophomore guard Don Dreher led all scorers with 19 points. Phillip Johnsen, a 6-10 sophomore center, paced the Eagles with 16 points. Santa Barbara plays host to Cabrillo on Thursday while Lompoc plays at Santa Ynez (0-2).

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The Swish Award
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