East County Sports

Meier wins first; Norsemen rout

2021 PREP BOYS BASKETBALL

 

EastCountySports.com staff report

 

SPRING VALLEY – What does a state champion coach who is approaching three hundred career victories do while getting ready for his first game at his third program during a global pandemic?

How about referee a junior varsity game.

That’s just what new  Mount Miguel head boys basketball coach Ryan Meier ended up doing on Tuesday night right before his new club went out and ended up beating defending Grossmont Hills League champion Helix for just the fourth time this century, 59-54, in wire-to-wire fashion in the Matadors’ season-opener.

Six-foot-9 center Caleb Wilson scored 15 of his team-high 19 points in the second half, and he also finished with 16 rebounds to lift Mount Miguel to just its fourth win over the Highlanders in the last 17 meetings.

Dre Richardson added 12 points for the Matadors, while guard Julius Harrington added eight points, as Mount Miguel gave Meier his first win at his new coaching job after stints at Francis Parker and La Jolla Country Day, the school which he guided to the CIF State title.

Both Richardson had Harrington had a pair of three-pointers. Richardson’s came in the first quarter, as the Matadors led 14-8 after one period, while Harrington made his treys in the second half after he had to increase his role when his starting backcourt mate got into foul trouble.

Helix got 23 points, six steals, and five rebounds from junior Markees Williams, while junior teammate Bona O’Quinn finished with 12 points and eight rebounds. Senior Isaiah Thomas ended with 10 points and seven rebounds.

The Scotties managed a rally in the second quarter to tie the score at 14-all.

Mount Miguel surged to a seven-point lead with just a few minutes left until halftime but Helix whittled it to 26-25 behind five late points from Thomas and a bucket from Williams.

Wilson scored four points in a sequence in the third quarter that included a rebound and score off his own missed conversion try from his original basket, as he turned a 34-31 lead into a 38-31 edge.

Harrington’s treys helped push Mount Miguel’s lead but it was Wilson who made his presence felt in the fourth with seven points and six rebounds, controlling the glass late.

Mount Miguel’s last victory over Helix was in 2019 but the previous wins since 2000 were in 2009 and 2003.

Helix, which went undefeated in the GHL last season, won its season-opener on Saturday against El Cajon Valley, 77-37.

 

LIBERTY CHARTER 79, CRAWFORD 49 – The Lions trailed 34-30 at halftime against the host Colts.

Liberty Charter outscored Crawford 20-8 in the third quarter to pull away in the opener for both teams.

 

Monday

VALHALLA 74, EL CAPITAN 45 – Joe Avalos poured in 29 points, while teammate Calvert Esho had 15 points and 21 rebounds to lead Valhalla to the win in the season-opener for both teams.

Daisean Desinor led El Capitan with 22 points, while teammate R.J. Lugtu added 12 points.

The Vaqueros are at Granite Hills on Thursday night at 6 p.m.

The Norsemen will host the Matadors on Thursday at 5 p.m.

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