East County Sports

MEN: East L.A. wins Cuyamaca tourney

Cuyamaca Tournament champion East L.A.


East County Sports staff report

SANTA MARIA (12-31-2018) – Palomar College was, literally, in the wrong place and the wrong time.

Allan Hancock College, the Comets’ tournament host, is located in this small, somewhat isolated town near the coast of central California. It’s nearest neighbor is Cuesta College of San Luis Obispo, so when one school hosts an event, the other is usually invited to participate since it’s often hard to get opponents to travel their way.

Another problem: small-town teams will rig tournament pairings so the locals receive a massive home-court advantage. And Sunday’s (Dec. 30) final round of the Allan Hancock Tournament proved to be quite slanted.

So while the Bulldogs played lowly – and winless – San Jose Coty College in the hosts’ final game, in order for Cuesta to share first prize with 3-0 records, the highly-motivated Cougars needed to win by a large margin.

Very large.

That opponent was Palomar.

In the end, the Comets still may not know what hit them, as they were held to one of their lowest point totals in more than a decade in a 56-40 setback to Cuesta. Allan Hancock then also held serve the round-robin event, staying unbeaten with an easy 89-66 decision over San Jose.

The Comets (6-9) 16 first-half points, making just 8-of-32 shots (25 percent) with a triple, then missing their lone foul shot The second half was only slightly better.

For Cuesta (12-4), guard Iker Cruz led the way with 14 points, including a trio of 3-point goals.

The top scorer for Palomar was Jamario Harris, who scored 10 of the Comets’ 40 points.

Cuyamaca Tournament

Championship: (2) East L.A. 88, Antelope Valley 55 – Fifth-ranked East Los Angeles (10-3) cruised to the championship over Antelope Valley (6-9). It was the third tournament win of the season for East L.A.

Third: Cypress 93, Cuyamaca 57 – Mike Magee had 32 points and Kameron Barnes added 20 points as Cypress (11-4) continued their strong play with a 93-57 win over Cuyamaca (2-14).

Fifth: San Diego Mesa 79, Victor Valley 64 – Aren Thomas had 24 points as San Diego Mesa (3-12) picked up a 79-64 win over Victor Valley (7-8). Alton Thompson had 23 points and Jamain Owens added 19 points in the loss for the Rams.

Seventh: Santa Ana 85, Miramar 77: The Dons (6-9) picked up a 85-77 win over 8th ranked Jets (10-5).

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