East County Sports

Knights sail past Horizon, go to 7-0 in Coastal



By James McHugh

© East County Sports.com
SAN DIEGO (1-29-16) — Foothills Christian got big numbers from a few different sources Friday night (Jan. 29) in their second Coastal League meeting with Horizon this season. The Knights used a 17-point night from KALE BALDADO and a 20-point, 10 assist performance from senior LUIS SALGADO to stay perfect in league 7-0, 16-3 overall, coasting past the Panthers 77-61.


Sophomore JORDAN STARR also had a nice night for himself with nine assists and eight rebounds for Foothills. The Knights once again rested seniors NIKKO PARANADA and OMAJAE SMITH while turning to younger talents JAREN NAFARRETE, DANIEL HOFFMAN and T.J. LOWERY at various points throughout the night, ensuring that all parties involved are ready come playoff time.


Baldado had a perfect night from the floor, connecting on each of his six shot attempts and 5-8 free throws. Baldado often provides a spark off the bench for the Knights in Smith’s absence or when foul trouble plagues the Knights’ starting corps. Not a three-point shooter or ball handler by nature, Baldado has a knack for finding passing lanes and getting into good feeding position in the post.


Jordan Starr also connected on each of his shot attempts from the floor and 1-2 charity stripers but contributed moreso as a distributor against an overmatched Panthers defense which still had to deal with Knights’ forward T.J. LEAF in addition to several other contributors on the night.


Leaf was an efficient 11-13 from the floor for 25 points and collected 10 rebounds to help guide the Knights offense. Leaf has eclipsed the 2,700 career point plateau (2,725) and is now just over 200 points shy of Chase Budinger for third place on the San Diego Section all-time leading scorers’ list.


Foothills Christian has nearly a week of rest before they pick up Coastal League play at Santa Fe Christian next Friday (Feb. 5) and then face state powerhouse Santa Ana Mater Dei Saturday night (Feb. 6) in the Nike Extravaganza which will take place at 8:30 at Mater Dei Catholic High School. Foothills Christian and Mater Dei are currently ranked No. 4 and No. 5 in the state of California respectively.


Foothills Christian:  T. J. Leaf 25 (10 reb, 5 ast, 1 blk, 1 stl), Luis Salgado 20 (10 ast, 4 reb, 1 stl), Kale Baldado 17 (1 reb, 1 blk), Jordan Starr 7 (9 ast, 8 reb, 1 stl), Jaren Nafarrete 4 (3 ast, 2 stl), Jordan Van Ommering 2 (1 reb, 1 ast), T. J. Lowery 2 (3 reb, 1 ast), Daniel Hoffman (2 reb, 1 ast).

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