East County Sports

Cash is money for Wolf Pack in victory




EastCountySports.com staff report


SANTEE – Needless to say, West Hills sophomore CASH CREIGHTON was money on Friday night.

Creighton connected on a trio of three-pointers at key moments in the second half of the Wolf Pack’s come-from-behind win over Santana at the Jeff Armstrong Memorial Horsman Automotive Tournament at West Hills High on Friday night.

Creighton’s deep trey in the final minutes gave West Hills a 53-49 lead.

What a great game,” Santana coach TIM BARRY said. “Coach Armstrong would be so proud. He and I always visioned the community getting together for games like this. This is what high school athletics is all about

After an early-season injury scare, senior point guard MICHAEL TOTAH returned to the Wolf Pack lineup and scored a team-high 16 points.

“We started slow but then once we amped the pressure up we were able to gain control of the game,” Totah said. “It truly was a back-and-forth game.”

Totah scored seven points in the second quarter, then later had a field goal in the third quarter that gave West Hills a 38-37 lead, but the Sultans’ BEN HART answered to tie the game.

Moments later, Creighton’s second triple of the game from near half court, gave the Pack the lead, 41-38, at the end of the period.

“Cash Creighton was lights out from three tonight,” Totah said. ¬†“Once we got the lead at the end of the third, we kept control of the lead and kept hitting big shots.”

West Hills’ KYLE DOBYNS finished with 12 points, including seven in the first quarter.

Santana’s MATT HITCHCOCK made a pair of free throws in the first quarter that gave Santana an early 7-0 lead.

However, Dobyns had a pair of field goals as the Wolf Pack came back to tie the game at 7-all.

“Kyle Dobyns played great attacking the rim constantly holding the pressure on their defense,” Totah said.

The score was tied at 11-all at the end of one period.

Totah gave West Hills its first lead with a three-pointer for the first basket of the second quarter.

Santana’s JAKE KELCHNER came right back with a bucket to make it a one-point game.

Totah knocked down another field goal later in the second quarter, as West Hills took an 18-16 lead.

Late in the second quarter, the Sultans’ BRANDON SIMMONS made a paif of free throws to give Santana back the lead at 20-18.

However, Totah responded with another bucket to even the score once again.

OLEK ZUKOVSKYY had a field goal in the second quarter for West Hills, but Santana’s CHAZ BAKER made a field goal before the end of the first half, as the Sultans led by three at halftime.

Santana’s DESMOND WILLIAMS made a three-pointer to up the Sultans’ advantage to 28-22 to open up the second half.

Then, the Sultans’ DYLAN FINLEY had a pair of free throws go down and all of a sudden, the hosts were down eight.

However, ASHTON AVESTRO (11 points) and Totah combined for six points to close the gap back to two points.

Williams made a field goal for the Sultans before Creighton made his first three-pointer to bring West Hills to within 33-32 with under two minutes left in the third quarter.

However, Simmons made a basket for Santana for a 35-32 lead.

After Dobyns’ free throws to make it 35-34, Williams, who led Santana with 13 points, made a field goal for Santana, upping the advantage to 37-34.

Zukovskyy, who had eight points, 12 rebounds and four blocks in the contest, made a field goal to make it 37-36, but Totah answered to give West Hills the lead, 38-37.

Avestro eventually made a three-pointer to make it 46-40 West Hills, and although the Wolf Pack didn’t have a great night at the line, the sophomore came through at the charity stripe in the clutch.

“Although we kept missing our free throws throughout the game,” Totah said. “We finished the game off with four clutch free throws from Ashton Avestro.”

Hitchcock had nine points for the Sultans, while Kelchner and Simmons both had eight points.

Senior guard DYLAN FINKEY had seven points, all in the second half.

West Hills and Santana are both 1-1 at the event.

The Wolf Pack host Mt. Carmel on Saturday at 5:30.

Prior to that, the Sultans will meet Southwest (El Centro) at 4.

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