East County Sports

Hillers capitalize on Wolf Pack miscues

Grossmont's Jonny Towne keeps the ball from West Hills' Jake Partington. / Vic Marano.





By Dave Dickens



SANTEE (1-7-2022) — The West Hills Wolf Pack came out fast and furious on a nice 10-2 run to open the game with the visiting Grossmont Foothillers on Friday night.


Let’s not say that was as good as it would get for the hosts, but not much better.


These two teams have almost become somewhat of a rival as great friends Jacob Ober, who took over the helm at GHS last year replacing legendary Coach Frank Foggiano, and Wolf Pack head coach Tim Barry go way back, and had two great battles last year, and was not any different on this Friday night, either.


As always an extra treat for so many of us, local celebrity and legendary coaches Wade Vickery and Randy Robinson were in attendance.


Anyhow, as the show did go on, the visiting veteran Grossmont Hillers didn’t stay far behind the Pack for too long.


The caveat was that this evening the West Hills boys, started to beat themselves, almost as if they thought it was best to move twice as fast as the Hillers, and that would spring ahead, but it only led to turnovers, and the type of turnovers a young team would make.


Going from a winning first quarter of 14-8, ending the half tied, 23-all.


Both squads had their share of ill-advised and ticky-tack fouls, such is the case in all sports these days, but officials are human, as well.


This game, as entertaining as it was predicted to be, almost seemed if they were playing a simple game of ping pong the way the two squads went back and forth remaining on each other’s tail.


However, even as the average spectator, it seemed the young Pack seemed to be running out of fuel and playing on fumes.


That is until some poorly thrown passes, not even toward the friendly jerseys, bobbling balls, as the young Pack was running down the court before having actual control of the ball. 


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“It is one thing to turn the ball over, but these were just young mistakes, bad passes at a teammate’s leg. Just silly turnovers that just shouldn’t be made. I really thought we had a chance tonight, the 10-2 run at the beginning and almost through the entire first quarter. They are a well-disciplined, great team, and Jacob and his staff do a great job over there,” said Barry.


With a little over 3 minutes left in the contest is when the Hillers pulled away, allowing West Hills to only score five, as the Hillers put up 14 in the fourth, ultimately taking the first of two meetings this season, 51-41.


Luke Gibson and Jake Kelly each put up 12 points on the evening, combining for 24 total points, almost 58 percent of the offense, and also the Hillers won the battle at the boards.


Up next for the Wolf Pack (9-5), they will take on cross-town rival, Santana (2-14) on Tuesday, Jan. 11, at 6 p.m.


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