In a battle between two nationally-ranked high school boys basketball teams, the Westchester High School Comets found out just how good the competition from the East is after an 80-70 loss to Oak Hill Academy of Virginia at the Anaheim Convention Center Saturday, February 5th.
The match-up between Westchester (14-3) and Oak Hill (23-2) was hyped from the preseason, when the Comets received a number-one national ranking by USA Today and Oak Hill was ranked second.
Westchester had since fallen to a tenth-place ranking and Oak Hill was ranked eighth before the game.
The face-off in the Nike Extravaganza tournament was a rematch from the same event last year, when Oak Hill also came out on top.
Westchester was handed its first loss after nine straight victories this season.
The two teams challenged each other closely for most of the first half, until Oak Hill went on a 10-0 run with less than two minutes left in the second quarter to take a 35-25 lead at halftime.
The Comets fought back early in the second half to even the score at 45-45, but Oak Hill never gave up its lead and was able to put Westchester away for the second year in a row.
Senior center Amir Johnson led the Comets with 22 points and nine rebounds and senior guard Gerard Moret added 14 points and eight rebounds in the game.
Oak Hill was led by junior Kevin Durant, who scored 21 points and grabbed ten rebounds.
The Venice High School Gondoliers trailed Fairfax High School by only five points at halftime, but Venice couldn’t keep up in the second half and lost 94-75 in a Western League game at home Friday, February 4th.
The Gondos (5-12, 3-5) were able to cut the margin of defeat in their second game against Fairfax after losing 94-54 January 19th.
Junior guard Noah Gottlieb led Venice scoring with 20 points.
The St. Bernard High School Vikings narrowly defeated Bishop Montgomery 86-84 at home Friday, February 4th, to hand the Knights their second Del Rey League loss this season.
The Vikings (19-8, 4-3) picked up the victory after losing to the Knights in the first meeting, Friday, January 14th.
Junior point guard Winsor Williams scored a team-high 24 points for St. Bernard, and senior guard John Wilson finished with 22 points.
St. Monica High School (9-10, 3-5) lost 54-27 to Bosco Tech High in a Camino Real League game at home Friday, February 4th.
In girls basketball games:
Venice High School reaffirmed its position at the top of the Western League with a 62-57 victory over host Fairfax High Friday, February 4th.
The Gondos (14-5, 7-1) continued their cruise through the league after picking up their sixth straight win. Junior forward Ivory Blockmon led Venice with 20 points and sophomore guard Lea Endo finished with 17 points.
The Westchester High School Comets grabbed a 49-40 win over host Hamilton High in a Western League game Friday, February 4th.
The Comets (6-5, 6-2) were led by senior Renee Carter, who scored 16 points and had ten rebounds, and senior Rhea Carter, who also had 16 points and nine rebounds in the game.
Santa Monica High School maintains a strong position for an Ocean League title this season after a 46-29 victory over host Beverly Hills High Friday, February 4th.
The Vikings (16-6, 7-1), who remain in second place in the league behind Morningside High, were led by senior guard London King, who scored 15 points in the win.
St. Monica High School narrowly lost 53-52 to Camino Real League leader Serra High School at home Thursday, February 3rd.
Senior forward Kalia Williams finished with a team-high 22 points and 12 rebounds for the third-place Mariners (13-11, 5-3).
The St. Bernard High School Vikings (4-15, 0-6) lost 63-43 to Oak Park High School in a non-Del Rey League game at home Saturday, February 5th.