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SoCalHoops Tournament News

College Prep Review Dream Classic 2001:
Game 1--Fontana Outlasts Ayala--(Jan. 16, 2001)

Dream2.gif (14173 bytes) What 7th Annual Dream Classic
MLK Holiday Challenge
Where: Loyola Marymount University
Gersten Pavilion
When Monday, January 15, 2001 (MLK Weekend)
Who 10 SoCal Teams, including many top players

Fontana 56, Ayala 51

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Ayala's Dantaa Donald

The College Prep Review Dream Classic for 2001 got off to a great start with the first game getting underway right on schedule at 12:45 p.m. at Loyola Marymount University's Gersten Pavilion.  For those who didn't have the pleasure of attending the event, it was a first rate event, well-run, with the games taking place like clockwork, excellent security, comfortable seating, and by the time the headliner games took place later in the day (Dominguez v. Clovis West) the place was packed to near-capacity.  And it was a great site for the event, an easy drive for those of us here in LA.  LMU is perched on a bluff overlooking the Pacific Ocean with Marina del Rey just on the north side of the campus, and Westchester and LAX on the south, and the weather was cool and crisp. . too bad it wasn't a football game. . . seriously though, this was a great event and a really nice venue, perhaps even nicer than Pauley Pavilion was for the other Dream Classic events which took place there in years past.   Oh, and one other thing before we get to this game:  We've often been criticized at times lumping some of the other MLK events which took place over the weekend all into the same category, as though there were really no qualitative differences between the events. . . And of course while that may be true of some of the games themselves (it is, after all, really hard to compare or say that one high school game is better than another, particularly when you're dealing with all kinds of teams from all the different enrollment divisions. . . ),  there's no doubt that this event did in fact feature the best matchups of any of the MLK weekend events. We want to thank the event organizers and sponsors, including College Prep Review and especially Dinos Trigonis and the many others (including a lot of volunteers) who worked very hard to put this event together and make it all happen. . . .

But about the games. . ..The first matchup of the day was Fontana v. Ayala.  Both teams came out tight in the first half, and actually shot terribly for much the game.  We've come to the conclusion that especially with young teams, when you put them in an "arena" setting, that most high school teams lose the shooter's perspective they're used to with playing in a smaller high school gym,  and so they tend to shoot poorly. . . that's not always true, but it sometimes happens even with the best of teams (remember the 1998-99 game at the Pond with LB Poly and Artesia where both teams were clanking them?). . .and it certainly happened in this game as the two teams shot poorly from the field.

Fontana led most of the game, which was a very low scoring first half, in which Fontana took a 21-16 lead  at the half. . . Ayala only managed to score 6 second quarter points, and Fontana wasn't much sharper than that, with just 10.  Of course, the other way to look at it is to say that this was a great defensive struggle, with both teams evenly matched. . . ok, the last part is probably more correct, because it just wasn't a great defensive struggle, at least not in the first half as both teams just seemed to be getting adjusted to the large surroundings. Ayala only shot 29% from the floor in the first half, while Fontana wasn't much better at 33%, but in the second half, things got decidedly more interesting as both the incoming crowd in the stands and the two teams started to settle in for the rest of the day. . .

trayvonwilliams120.jpg (5429 bytes)For those who are interested in such things, among the guys sitting in the press row who call themselves "scouts" or "recruiting gurus" (and believe us, we don't willingly us that sobriquet for what it is we do here at SoCalHoops), the consensus seemed to be that the top D-I potential prospect of all the players on the floor was Trayvon Williams (6'-5" So. SG/SF) from Fontana, and while it took Trayvon a while to heat up, he eventually found himself in a position where he was the game's high scorer with 14 points.  He's still got a long way to go as a soph, but he's got a lot of promise. . .at least that was the view among those who are supposed to know about such things. . .

Of course, that also overlooked the fact that both Fontana and Ayala also have some guys who can get some things done when it count, including guys like Dantaa Donald (5'-9" Sr. SG/PG) from Ayala. . . We've seen his name spelled a number of different ways, but this is how it was listed in the program.  He's a small, not overly speedy but nevertheless quick (does that make any sense?) guard, who has a pretty reliable shot, although yesterday he struggled to find it, shooting just 2-9 from the field, and 2-7 from three.  Still, the two three pointers he hit, back-to-back late in the game were what kept Ayala in it.  He's a pretty good defender as well, but his only drawback right now is size, as he had a tough time with taller guards from Fontana, but matched up well against Aaron Gipson.  

malikjones.jpg (4355 bytes)Malik Jones (6'-5" Sr. F) was another Ayala player we expected to see better production from, although frankly, in this environment, 3-6 shooting from the field isn't half-bad (actually, it is, and it's also half good too). . . He's got the reach and the long, lean body and quickness to take his game somewhere at the next level, but he's also sort of a "tweener", someone not really big enough or overly-athletic enough to dunk on guys (although we've seen Malik do that, he just didn't do it yesterday), but he does like to slash to the hole in other games we've watched him play.  We also liked the energy from Kyle Gregory (6'-1" Jr. G) from Ayala. . yes, he's the coach's son, but don't hold that against him.  He brings a great intensity to the game and has a decent shot.  Andrew Hatch   (6'-1" Fr. G) only played 9 minutes, but did some nice things, including shooting 100% from the field, and hitting a three-pointer at the buzzer at the end of the third quarter to bring Ayala back to within 7 points (41-34) after trailing by as many as 10 during the third quarter. Danny Stephens (6'-0" Jr. G) of Ayala also hit a nice three pointer at a crucial point in the game despite struggling from the floor the rest of the day.  With the loss, Ayala dropped to 14-3 overall.

trayvonwilliams_kylegregory.jpg (5307 bytes)Fontana improved its record to 11-6, and they opened the third quarter after Dantaa Donald's consecutive threes with an 8-0 run of their own, but Ayala came storming back and pulled to within a point, 52-51 on one of the most questionable series of plays we saw Fontana run during the whole game.  The Steelers had the clock at under minute with the ball, and a lead of 51-48, and it was clearly a two possession game.  All they had to do was manage the clock, play good defense, not foul and prevent Ayala from getting off a three-pointer.   But instead of using the clock and getting the ball into the hands of their key scorer, Trayvon Williams, the Steelers proceeded to take a three pointer after having run only about 10 seconds off the clock, and Ayala got the ball back on the rebound after the miss. Of course, Fontana then went into a brain-fart, mind-seizure mode, and not content with giving the ball back to Ayala with plenty of time left to score, also fouled Ayala's Kyle Gregory.   Now there's one thing you don't do in a close game:  You don't foul the coach's son.  Why not?  Because as everyone will tell you, coach's sons do one thing (if it's only one thing) well:  They shoot free-throws.  These are kids who have hung around gyms all their lives, watching in the wings while their dads run practice, and they have nothing else to do but watch and shoot. . they work in the driveways. . .they shoot and shoot.  Just ask Ryan Bradshaw, or Jimmy Goffredo, or Quinn Hawking, or Jason Wallberg. . . anyone of them are considered shooters, especially free-throw shooters. 

And so is Kyle Gregory.  And in this instance, he went to the line with about 30 seconds to play,  and calmly sunk two free throws to bring the score to 52-51, pulling Ayala within one point in a game that at least in the first half no one thought they had any business playing in.  Of course, Ayala was then forced to foul to stop the clock and with 22.1 seconds remaining, they fouled Fontana's Jose Gallardo (6'-0" Sr. G)--not a bad choice since he'd already missed two from the line, but predicatably, he made them both this time, and with another steal and a layup by Fontana's Shedrack Okeobor (6'-2" Sr. G)--who had a pretty good day shooting 4-5 from the field finishing with 13 points-- Fontana pulled out the win.

We also learned one funny bit from Damian Secore in his article about the game in today's Riverside Press Enterprise:   Apparently, the bus driver who was taking the Fontana team to the game got lost, and thought the event was at the Long Beach State Pyramid (which is where the event took place last year). . . . ultimately, as the bus went through the 105 exit to the 405 and started to head south to Long Beach, Fontana Coach John McNally woke up to the situation, got the bus headed in the right direction, and remarkably, the team made it to LMU on time. 

Anyway, it wasn't a real barn-burner of a game until the last three or four minutes, but it was a good way to start off the 2000 CPR Dream Classic. . . and the rest of the games (with the exception of the Redondo v. Inglewood game, which was a blow-out and thus pretty hard to watch) got off to a pretty good start. . . oh, and by the way, if anyone found a cellular telephone antennae out in the lobby, we won't pay anything for you to send it back, but if you found it, send an e-mail and let us know. . .

Here's the box score:

Ayala Bulldogs--51

Player FGM FGA 3PTM 3PTA FTM FTA PTS ORB DRB TR PF AST TO BS ST MIN
Jonaththan Antolin 1 1 0 0 0 0 2 0 1 1 1 0 1 0 0 11:28
*Dontaa Donald 2 9 2 7 3 4 9 2 2 4 3 2 2 0 0 27:29
Dan Larson 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 DNP
Issa Shehadeh 0 1 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0:37
Danny Stephens 3 11 1 6 0 0 7 0 0 0 0 0 4 0 0 11:46
Greg Parks 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 DNP
Steven Falls 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 DNP
*Lucas Sanchez 3 7 0 0 2 3 8 3 6 9 3 4 4 0 0 26:22
Andrew Hatch 2 2 1 1 0 0 5 0 0 0 2 0 1 0 0 9:11
*Malik Jones 3 6 0 2 1 2 7 1 6 7 3 0 1 2 1 29:55
*Kyle Gregory 1 9 1 4 4 6 7 0 1 1 3 0 4 0 0 13:17
Daniel Morgan 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 DNP
*Ken Quinn 3 4 0 0 0 1 6 4 6 10 3 2 6 0 1 29:40
Justin Davenport 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0:12
Team               3 4 7            
Totals 18 50 5 20 10 16 51 13 26 39 18 8 24 2 4  

Total FG                1st Half      7/24     292    2nd Half     11/26   423    Game     18/50    360
3 PT FG                 1st Half      1/11     090    2nd Half     4/9      444      Game      5/20    250
Free Throws        1st Half     2/4        500    2nd Half      8/12    667      Game     10/16   625

Fontana Steelers--56

Player FGM FGA 3PTM 3PTA FTM FTA PTS ORB DRB TR PF AST TO BS ST MIN
Anthony Clayton 1 3 0 1 2 5 4 0 2 2 1 0 4 0 0 10:19
Chris Duran 0 2 0 1 0 0 0 0 2 2 0 1 2 0 0 12:27
*Shedrack Okoebor 4 5 1 2 4 5 12 1 2 3 4 2 0 0 3 18:08
J. Perry 1 1 0 0 0 0 2 0 2 2 1 0 1 0 0 9:02
*Aaron Gipson 3 7 1 3 0 2 7 3 1 4 3 3 1 0 2 16:42
Jose Gallado 2 4 2 4 2 4 8 0 0 0 0 1 0 0 0 19:04
Joe Horzen 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 DNP
Gold Okolugbo 1 3 0 0 0 0 2 1 0 1 1 0 0 0 0 4:39
*Cory McJimson 3 5 0 0 0 1 6 0 2 2 2 1 4 3 2 19:45
*Trayvon Williams 6 13 0 1 2 2 14 0 7 7 1 1 3 2 0 25:24
Raymond Jenkins 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 DNP
*Mark Mancha 0 3 0 2 0 0 0 1 1 2 2 0 1 0 0 16:00
Josh Okoebor 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 DNP
Erik Crull 0 1 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 1 0 0 0 0 8:26
Team                 4 4            
Totals 21 47 4 14 10 19 56 6 23 29 16 9 16 5 13  

Total FG            1st Half   8/24     333    2nd Half      13/23  565     Game     21/47     447
3 PT FG             1st Half    3/11     273    2nd Half        1/3    333      Game      4/14      286
Free Throws     1st Half   2/4       500     2nd Half       8/15   533     Game     12/19    526

  Aya Fon   Aya Fon   Aya Fon
Free Throw Pts 10 10 3PT Pts 15 12 Pts/Possession 0.60 0.72
Pts off Turnovers 12 19 2nd Chance 9 7 Pts off Bench 14 16
Total Rebounds 39 29 Team Rbds 7 4 Deadball Rbds 2 3
Off Rbd % 36.1 18.8 Def Rebd% 81.3 63.9 Total Rebd% 57.4 42.6
Team 1 2 3 4 Total
Ayala Bulldogs 11 6 17 17 51
Fontana Steelers 10 11 20 15 56

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