Basketball team loses to Hoover, its second loss in three games. League title hopes take a hit.
By Brandon HENSLEY
Just like that, look who is back in the driver’s seat for another Pacific League championship.
It’s the Pasadena Bulldogs,
reigning league champs since
2005, and again in a situation where all they have to do is win out
and another first-place finish
That’s because the Crescenta Valley Falcons have hit a roadblock. Or a couple. After starting league off at 8-0, including a win over Pasadena, CV has lost two of its last three games, the most recent Wednesday night at Hoover High School to a Tornadoes team that was looking for revenge.
After the Falcons put a hurt on the Tornadoes earlier this month 69-36 at CV, things were noticeably different this time around. The Falcons couldn’t shoot, Hoover couldn’t miss, and so the Falcons’ 64-53 defeat has the team searching for answers with just three games to go before the playoffs start.
“The first time we played them, they got shots,” CV Coach Shawn Zargarian said of Hoover. “[Tonight], the shots fell. You have to tip your hat off to Hoover. They not only made shots but they played so hard with so much effort.”
The Tornadoes (12-11, 4-7 in league) made 12 3-pointers in the game, seven from Jash Francisco. They blasted the Falcons from everywhere on the court, passing up open two-point shots in the name of getting open looks from beyond the arc.
“We like to get layups and 3s,” said Hoover Coach Jack Van Patten. “We call a corner 3 a Hoover layup. We actually have a drill where we practice that.”
Hoover built a 33-16 halftime lead, and led by as many as 24 points in the second half.
The Falcons (18-6, 9-2) on the other hand couldn’t get anything consistent going offensively. Senior guard Cole Currie finished with 15 points, but was hounded all night. Van Patten said he was proud of his guards Alex Chrishyan and Ryan Barseghian for their defense on Currie.
“Currie is, if not the best player in the league, one of the two, three best in the league,” said Van Patten.
Both teams shot 15 free throws, but while the Tornadoes made
12 of their attempts, CV only
“We’re an 80% free throw shooting team,” said a disappointed Zargarian, noting his team missed seven straight free throws at
Kris Jaborian led the Falcons charge in the fourth quarter, scoring all of his 12 points in the frame, but the Falcons could never get any closer than 11 points.
Maybe what Hoover did wasn’t a total shock. Muir High School, which beat CV in an overtime thriller Jan. 25, lost to the Tornadoes on Monday, 68-66.
The Falcons play host to Burroughs on Friday then travel to Pasadena on Tuesday before wrapping up the regular season against Arcadia Feb. 7. If the Falcons fail to find their shot at Pasadena like they did Wednesday, the league title will most likely be going back to the Bulldogs. CV historically struggles at Pasadena.
But first, it’s Burroughs and there’s not much CV can do right now but to embrace another day and move forward.
“We don’t have time,” Zargarian said. “We have one day to practice and move on. We gotta go.”