East County Sports

ROUNDUP: Eagles fly solo above Valley

Sophomore guard Mikeece Dunbar, of Mount Miguel, is pursued by Xsavier Smith (left) and Moses Smith, of Granite Hills on Friday. / EastCountySports photo



By Bill Dickens
© East County Sports.com


EL CAJON – Led by the 23-point assault of RYAN KELLY, the 17 points from JORDEN ROGERS and the 13 points from CAMERON SPITZER, the Granite Hills Eagles virtually wrapped up their second Grossmont Valley League championship in a row by knocking off Mount Miguel, 65-53, Friday night (Feb. 10) 65-53.

Granite Hills’ RYAN KELLY looks for room under the basket Friday night. / photo by Ramon Scott

“We had a bad taste in our mouth last year because we had to share the championship with Monte Vista,” Kelly said. “But this time we were fired up. We were determined not to share the title this time around.”

The victory was the ninth in a row for Granite Hills.

“Mount Miguel is always a challenge because they are such tremendous athletes,” said Kelly, a 6-foot-7 senior who is seeking a scholarship to Point Loma Nazarene or San Diego State. “We won championships in ’16 and ’17, and it’s a good feeling.”

“When we come into a game like this, it’s built on confidence,” Kelly said. “We played at home and that’s a big plus.”

Kelly assumed control of the Eagles’ quest once Mount Miguel star DARIEN NORWOOD was sent to the bench with his fifth foul.

After the Matadors took the lead 50-48 on a putback by high-flying MARQUISE EDWARDS plus a technical free throw after Granite Hills coach RANDY ANDERSON was assessed a technical, the Eagles’ started their winning run of 14-straight points.

Granite Hills’ JORDEN ROGERS dribbles against Mount Miguel Friday night in El Cajon. / photo by Ramon Scott

Kelly had a layup and a pair of free throws, then called for the ball down low and converted an inside basket during the rush. He had 10 points in the fourth quarter.

“It’s great to play in front of a big crowd like this,” Rogers added. “When you’re at home, the odds seem to go in your favor. The fans knew what was at stake.”

The Matadors surge in the third was helped by RICKY HARVEY, who hit a three-pointer en route a co-team high 13 points, along with MIKEECE DUNBAR.

Granite Hills led at halftime, 28-25, as the first half had the Matadors trying to run an up-tempo pace, but the Eagles were more inclined to take their time in the offensive end. The contrasting styles led to a rough-and-tumble affair.

The Eagles took a 10-7 lead in the first on a three-pointer from Rogers.

Moments later, the Eagles tied the game at 14-all on a trey from Spitzer.

Rogers opened up the second quarter with his second triple of the half, followed by another hoop which gave the Eagles a 20-15 lead.

Mount Miguel’s MUGABE MILLER made a steal and got the ball to Norwood for a transtition basket to close a Granite lead to 25-23.

However, the Matadors’ JAMES ALLEN came out of a time out to hit a jumper, helping the Matadors tie the game at 25.

Spitzer then nailed his second three of the first half, giving the Eagles a 28-25 lead.

Kelly opened the second half scoring nearly two minutes into the period.

Dunbar made a four-point play midway through the period, however, as Mount Miguel knotted the contest once again, this time at 34-apiece.

Edwards had another pair of leaping putbacks in the third as Mount Miguel took a 38-37 lead.


Granite Hills:  Ryan Kelly 23 (14 reb, 3 ast, 1 stl, 1 blk), Jorden Rogers 18 (2 reb, 2 stl), Cameron Spitzer 14 (3 reb, 1 ast, 1 stl), Moses Smith 10 (5 reb).

Mount Miguel:  Ricky Harvey 13 (1 stl), Mikeece Dunbar 13 (8 reb), Darian Norwood 12 (3 reb), James Allen 5 (2 reb), Devon Brown 4, Marquis Neal 3, Marquise Edwards 3, Mugabe Miller (2 stl).


HELIX 75, VALHALLA 28 — Helix bullied Valhalla in a Grossmont Hills League game Friday night (Feb. 10) in front of a full house in La Mesa.

But the crowd was not exclusively dominated by the Highlanders, who came on board to see MILES NORRIS vanquish Valhalla.

Not only did Norris help Helix wrap up the 18th league title in the career of Highlanders’ coach JOHN SINGER, he attracted major college staffers from Oregon, UCLA, Arizona and San Diego State in the process.

The 6-foot-9 Norris scored a game-high 18 points, snared 17 rebounds, blocked 5 shots, dished 4 assists and collected 3 steals as the Highlanders rolled over the Norsemen. He was 4-for-4 from the free throw line.

Helix put this one on ice in the third quarter when they jumped on the Norsemen 24-0.

“We did not give up any second-half shots,” said Helix assistant coach JOE HERNANDEZ.

“Singer told his team he had not seen as good a defense in his whole career as well as he saw tonight,” Hernandez added.

The victory allowed Helix to clinch the Grossmont Hills League title.

In addition to Norris’s scoring spree, DYLAN LEE popped in 12 points, and JAYLEN ARNOLD added 10.

KAI KOMAKI paced Valhalla with 17 points, including 5 three-pointers.

The Norsemen really kept this one close early, as the teams were deadlocked at 15-all after the first period.

Helix:  Miles Norris 18 (17 reb, 4 ast, 3 stl, 5 blk), Dylan Lee 12, Jaylen Arnold 10, Ilias Beltz 6, Isaiah Wooden 6, Amari Greene 6, Jaylen Hinson 5, Marcus Holmes 2, Maurice Holmes 2, Bradley Dunn 2, Carson Baker 2, Kevin Howard 2, Javon Davis 2.

Valhalla:  Kai Komaki 17, Malique Shaw 4, Ty Schimke 3, Ramzi Sultan 2, Trayvon Mims 2.


STEELE CANYON 57, WEST HILLS 53 – The SANDERS brothers ganged up on West Hills as the Cougars pushed past the Wolf Pack 57-53 in Friday’s (Feb. 10) Grossmont Hills League contest.

GAGE SANDERS led the way with 20 points and KOBE SANDERS tossed in 6.

THOMAS FISHBURNE pitched in 12 markers.

West Hills’ NATHAN BALL was on fire with 22 points to pace the Pack, including one 3 and 5-for-9 free throws.

MARQUELL COOL finished with 12 points, including 2 threes.

Steele Canyon:  Gage Sanders 20, Thomas Fishburne 12, Tyler Smith 8, Jalen Sayles 7, Kobe Sanders 6, Landon Schirer 4.

West Hills:  Nathan Ball 22 (5 reb, 2 ast, 2 stl, 1 blk), Marquell Cool 12 (5 reb, 1 ast, 2 stl), Cameron Barry 9 (3 reb, 6 ast, 2 stl), Chris Moyer 4 (13 reb, 1 ast, 1 stl, 1 blk), Adam Dillon 4 (3 reb), Scott Bettoney 2, Michael Totah (1 reb, 1 ast).


SANTANA 58, MONTE VISTA 38 – There’s no secret to shutting down Monte Vista’s DEONDRE McHAYLE, although the Sultans gave it a major league attempt.

“Everybody wants to play McHayle box-and-one, and he still gets his points,” said Monte Vista coach MIKE TULLY of McHayle, who is averaging 20 points per game this season.

McHayle scored 13 points, grabbed 8 rebounds and made 3 steals as the Monarchs fell to the Sultans in Friday’s (Feb. 10) Grossmont Valley League showdown.

Santana led across the board in knocking off the Monarchs.

NICK BERHALTER led the Sultans with 14 points and 8 rebounds, while JOHN BOBOF chucked in 11 points and grabbed 8 rebounds.

BRANDON SIMMONS pitched in 11 points, grabbed 7 rebounds and made 6 steals for Santana.

The Sultans scored nine consecutive points to end the first quarter up 9-6.

Monarchs senior Andrew Gonzalez hitting a game-tying three in the second period.

The Sultans (5-4 GVL, 15-11) led at the half, 26-16 and 41-24 at the end of three.

Santana:  Nick Berhalter 14 (8 reb, 1 ast, 2 stl, 1 blk), John Bobof 11 (8 reb, 2 ast, 1 stl), Brandon Simmons 11 (7 reb, 2 ast, 6 stl), TC Simmons 9 (2 reb, 3 ast), Andrew Hitchcock 8 (3 reb, 3 ast, 2 stl), Ben Hart 2 (2 reb, 12 stl), Zach Leggitt 1 (1 reb), Cole Kinkade (5 reb, 1 stl, 1 blk), Simone Maritano (1 reb).

Monte Vista:  Deondre McHayle 13 (8 reb, 3 stl), Andrew Gonzalez 6, Gabrial Galvez 8, Amir Conley 8, Iewa Ali 3, Ty Underwood 2.


FOOTHILLS CHRISTIAN 63, SANTA FE CHRISTIAN 62 – The Knights survived a scare from the Eagles for the second time this season, and this time it wasn’t the usual suspects that led Foothills to the winning charge.

Santa Fe Christian took control of the contest in the second quarter, taking a 35-28 lead into the locker room. The game was tied 17-all after one.

The Eagles then held leads of 52-43 and 56-50 before the Knights stormed to the finish.

JORDAN VAN OMMERING led the late surge, racking up seven points in the final stanza, including a pair of big free throws.

DORIAN BLUE also came up big down the stretch, not only on the boards, but with a steal and a big, big basket late on a putback.

The Eagles had a last-chance at an upset, but missed on a three-point bid with five seconds left.

FCHS wasn’t without its main man JAYLEN HANDS during the comeback, either, however.

Hands scored 11 of his 24 points in the fourth.

Van Ommering had 15 points, while KALE BALDADO added 10 points, 17 rebounds and four blocks.



EL CAPITAN 66, EL CAJON VALLEY 27 – No further information was available for this Grossmont Valley League game, as El Cap improved to 4-5 in league play.

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