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News From The Simi Valley
TipOff Classic --(Dec. 3, 1998)

Based on Wednesday's results, there will be two great semifinal games in the winner's bracket on Friday night:  At 6:00 p.m. at Simi Valley High, Santa Clara goes against county foe Camarillo. For Santa Clara, it will be a chance to make history as coach Lou Cvijanovich tries to tie a state record with victory No. 802.

And then at 7:30 p.m. Grant High and Gilbert Arenas, who has started the season with unbelievably great performances (42 points, and 39 points), will play host Simi Valley.  Simi got to the semifinal by beating South Gate in the second round, 88-56.  Here's a recap of that one:

Simi Valley 88, South Gate 56--Rafael Berumen scored 27 points and Shaun Michel had 17 assists--one shy of the school record--for the Pioneers (2-0) in a quarterfinal victory at the Simi Valley tournament.  Michel racked up 17 assists, just one shy of the school  record, and ran the offense to lead the host Simi Valley team Wednesday night.  Branduinn Fullove and Brett Michel each scored 16 points for Simi as it reached the semifinals in its own tournament Friday night. It will take on Grant and standout Gilbert Arenas at 7:30 p.m. at the Tom Harmon Gymnasium.

With Shaun Michel in control of Simi Valleys offense, Simi opened up a 24-12 lead in the first quarter while missing just two
shots. The lead was 39-18 by halftime. The 6-foot-2 Michel added muscle to his frame and confidence to his game in the offseason, something clearly in evidence in Simi Valleys opening two victories. Michel added 10 points and three steals.  A 10-0 run at the top of the second period opened up a 34-14 lead. Berumen closed the period with a three-point play and an inside jumper, extending the lead to 39-18 at the half.

Good shot selection enabled Simi Valley to hit 17 of 23 shots from the floor in the first half. South Gate, by contrast, was only 8 of 23 from the field in the opening half. 

Grant on the other hand, didn't have as easy a time of it in their second round game, but still managed to win pretty convincingly. Here's a recap of that one:

Grant 73, Pasadena Marshall 66--Gilbert Arenas scored 39 points, making 13 of 21 shots, and the Lancers (2-0) advanced to the Simi Valley semifinals, where it plays the hosts at 7:30 p.m. Friday.  Deverion Mackey scored 23 points for Pasadena Marshall, including five three-pointers. Behind Arenas, the Lancers defeated Marshall Fundamental of Pasadena in the second round game. Arenas also had 12 rebounds and four assists. Daniel Tarr had 16 points.

Santa Clara 86, North Hollywood 46--Santa Clara advanced by beating North Hollywood.  And the Ventura Star News said "If there's a better point guard in the region than B.J. Ward of Santa Clara High, Coach Lou Cvijanovich sure hasn't seen one."  The paper then quoted Cvijanovich as saying:    "God almighty, I don't know what he can't do," Cvijanovich said. "He could stop on a dime, he could do anything. He's amazing."

Ward, who has signed with UC Santa Barbara along with teammate Nick Jones (6'-4" Sr. SG/SF)  provided quite an exhibition of fundamental basketball Wednesday night, scoring 28 points while making 13 of 17 shots and the Saints routed North Hollywood, 86-46, in a quarterfinal game of the Simi Valley boys' tournament at Camarillo High.  The 6-foot-1 Ward dribbles the ball with so much confidence and skill he looks as if he could do it with his eyes closed. And he has.   "When it was dark, I'd go outside and dribble," he said of his early basketball days. Ward and Jones, who scored 22 points, give the Saints (2-0) an impressive backcourt for Cvijanovich, who won his 801st career game in 41 seasons of coaching.   Many believe that Santa Clara has a chance to win a state Division V championship this season. But they'll have to go through a few other good schools, like one of the best kept secrets in all of SoCal, the Price School, which is located in the Crenshaw/Manchester Faith Center.  

Santa Clara took a 25-11 lead in the first quarter and raced to a 45-23 advantage by halftime. Terrance Dotsy added 8 rebounds, 8 points and 3 assists for Santa Clara while teammate Anthony Camper scored 10 points. Randall Johnson scored 16 for North Hollywood and Sherman Richards hit 13 points. If Santa Clara wins and if Grant wins, it could set up a real matchup of guards, between Grant's Gilbert Arenas and Daniel Tarr on the one hand and Jone and Ward on the other.

In another winner's bracket game on Wednesday, Camarillo advanced by beating a good Notre Dame team:

Camarillo 74, Notre Dame 66--Jay Williamson scored 27 points, including five three-pointers, to help the Scorpions advance to the semifinals of the Simi Valley tournament.  Notre Dame (1-1) couldn't handle the Scorpions' inside play of 6-5 Kyle Lassiter, who scored 16 points, and 6-6 Gary Bryce, who had nine points.   Chris Williams of Notre Dame finished with 26 points and 11 rebounds.   Camarillo (2-0) led, 38-37, at halftime and broke away to take a 12-point lead in the third quarter.  Notre Dame got as close as three points in the fourth quarter behind Dante Ward, who scored 17 points, including five three-pointers.

In the losers (er, um, ahem, that's   "consolation") bracket, here's what happened on Wednesday:

El Camino Real 84, Granada Hills 53--In consolation action, Justin Saad-Anthony scored 19 points and Lyndell Anderson had  21 points, and Brandon Robertson had 17,  to lead El Camino Real to an 84-53 victory over Granada Hills. And the El Camino Real boys' basketball team learned an important lesson Wednesday afternoon: Do to others what others do to you. The win came one day after El Camino Real was tossed around by Gilbert Arenas and Grant in an 80-66 loss. This time the Conquistadores were the aggressors, jumping out to a 41-21 halftime lead and cruising the rest the of the way to keep the Highlanders (0-2) winless this season. Alonzo Parks
led Granada Hills with 17.

Other consolation bracket games were scheduled to take place today (Thursday) at both Camarillo and Simi Valley.

At Camarillo, Verdugo Hills will played Granada Hills at 3 p.m.; El Camino Real played Roosevelt at 4:30 p.m.; and Santa Paula played San Fernando at 6 p.m.  At Simi Valley, North Hollywood played Notre Dame in a rematch of the ARC League playoffs at 5 p.m.; Marshall played South Gate at 7 p.m.

The Swish Award
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