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Reebok Las Vegas Holiday Prep Classic:
Westchester Beats Mt. View--(Dec. 21, 1998)

Westchester played Phoenix Mt. View in one of the most exciting games of the tournament so far, winning 43-42. 

This was a battle of defending state champions, Arizona v. California, in the large schools division. The matchups were so even it was ridiculous and every time Westchester would score, Mt. View would come right back.   At the half, the score was tied 27-27.  But the real drama started in the final few minutes.  Westchester had been leading by two points, 41-39, and then with a little more than 2 minutes to play, Tanner Shell hit a three to put Mt. View ahead 42-41.  Westchester then turned the ball over, and Mt. View decided to go into a stall, moving the ball in order to avoid the five second call, but Westchester just got patient, let the defense sag a little, and it was enough to lull Mt. View into a false sense of security, and induced a lazy pass from Brady Richeson to Shell which was picked off by Eric Knight who fed the ball to Lou Wright on the break, and he was fouled in the act of shooting.  Lou went to the line and calmly sank both to put Westchester ahead with less than a minute to play.

Mt. View then got the ball back, forced a shot and Westchester got the ball back, dribbled into the frontcourt, where coach Azzam quickly called a timeout with less than 12 seconds to play.  Westchester then took the ball out in it's own frontcourt away from the bench, with Jason Breland inbounding.  Mt. View however had taken advantage of the timeout, and was fronting every man, so effectively, that Jason evidently didn't know what to do and he couldn't hear Azzam across the court calling for yet another timeout to reset the offense, and he threw an inbound pass into the backcourt which literally sailed four feet over the head of Eric Knight and it went out of bounds, turning the ball over to Mt. View.

So the Toros had yet another chance to win the game, and predictably, they gave the ball to Tanner, who launched a two from the left baseline with only seconds to play.  It hit the rim, bounced around and then dropped to the floor.  Bzzz. Game over. Westchester wins.

Great game.  Of course, someone said to Azzam after the game that they thought it was the "Game of the year for Westchester," to which Ed Azzam replied "I hope not."  

And actually, as things turned out later in the evening, it would be the best performance because Westchester next faced Horizon of Colorado.  A report on that one will follow.

Lou Wright was named the game MVP scoring 16 points, on 6 of 11 shooting, including 2 three pointers.  Chris Osborne had 12, Eric Knight had 8, adn Terrence Lawson adn Jason Breland had 3 each; Chad Bell had 1 point.   Mountain View was led by ASU signee Tanner Shell who had 11 points and Southern Utah signee Nate Bloom had 13.  Dennis Lattimore (6'-8" So. C), a normally high scoring big man was held to just 2 points.

Great game, big fun. Here are the pics.

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wst591.JPG (33564 bytes) wst592.JPG (40409 bytes) westch615.JPG (37158 bytes) westch616.JPG (33251 bytes) westch617.JPG (36911 bytes) westch618.JPG (37078 bytes)
Westch619s.jpg (32219 bytes)          

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