David Parsons hits a 70 foot game winner, Gabe Vincent goes for 40 points in his final game and Scotts Valley girls basketball gets a program win. Just another night of playoff basketball in Northern California.
At halftime it was hard to imagine Friday's North Coast Section Division I quarterfinal between Heritage and De La Salle coming down to the wire, but that's exactly what happened as the Spartans squeaked out a 52-47 win. The Spartans closed the first half on an 11-3 run and seemed to have all the momentum. However, the Patriots, led by senior forward Shon Briggs and his 26 points, were relentless in the second half.
Briggs, the No. 6 prospect in the 2014 NCP Top 40, brought his team within one point, 46-45, with 1:12 left in the game. When the game was on the line, the Spartans sunk their free throws and defended their home court. While Briggs led everyone on the floor in scoring, De La Salle senior Patrick Marr and sophomore Devin Asiasi made sure the Spartans came out on top.
Marr, a two-star prospect signed to Cal State East Bay, contributed 11 points and one of the plays of the game as he raced the bulk of the court to block a shot on what appeared to be a Heritage layup. Not to be outdone by his teammate, Asiasi got the crowd riled up when he finished off an alley-oop in the third quarter.
In the semifinals, De La Salle will square off against No. 1 seed Monte Vista. The Mustangs have already beaten the Spartans twice this season. The other semi-final will see No. 2 seed San Ramon Valley host No. 3 Freedom. (William Boor)
Other boys basketball notes:
Sacred Heart Cathedral beat Half Moon Bay 49-46 in the Central Coast Section Open Division playoffs. The real story was junior David Parsons' 70 foot shot at the buzzer. It made the SportsCenter Top 10 plays and sent the Fightin' Irish into the semi-finals against Mitty on Tuesday. Serra takes on Riordan in the other semi-final.
Acalanes beat Drake 64-61 in overtime to earn a date with No. 1 Bishop O'Dowd in the NCS Division III semi-finals. Acalanes senior post Buster Souza had 25 points while Drake junior Jesse Hunt countered with 26 points. Acalanes' Matt Thomas had 29 points for the second straight game.
UC Santa Barbara signee Gabe Vincent put an emphatic individual stamp on his high school career with a 40 point night on Friday. However, the Rams fell to Cosumnes Oaks for the second time on the court this year as the Wolf Pack left with a 76-74 win. L.J. Reed had 21 points in the win. They will face Del Oro in one of the two loaded Sac-Joaquin Section Division II semi-finals. Grant will face Folsom in the other semi-final. Senior Cameron Oliver had 30 points in a 93-61 win over Sacramento.
Through two playoff wins over Turlock and Granite Bay, Jesuit senior Lake Lutes has a combined 51 points. The Air Force bound forward had 29 points in a 77-39 win over the Grizzlies. The Marauders face Kennedy-Sacramento on Wednesday.
Natomas freshman Mehki Williams has generated buzz this season and is carrying it forward to the playoffs. He had 26 points in a 90-56 win over Mesa Verde to guide Natomas to the SJS Division IV semi-finals against Riverbank. (Douglas Benton)
St. Mary's-Stockton star Charise Holloway avoided a serious injury to her knee, but will miss the rest of the playoffs, according to NCP analyst Chris Roemer. The Rams made the semi-finals after a 96-47 win over River City. They will host McClatchy in the semi-finals on Tuesday after beating the Lions 76-60 on December 7. McClatchy beat No. 19 ranked Nevada Union 59-44 on Thursday. The other semi-final will be Delta River League rivals Oak Ridge and Pleasant Grove.
Bradshaw Christian junior Erika Bean had a game high 25 points on Thursday in a 62-52 win over Riverbank. The 2015 3-star prospect is averaging 17 points, seven rebounds, eight assists and seven steals per game.
The WCAL went 2-2 on the opening night of the CCS Open Division playoffs. Sacred Heart Cathedral (53-47 over Wilcox) and St. Ignatius (56-44 over Eastside Prep) advanced while Scotts Valley upset Mitty 67-64. In the other first round game, Pinewood beat Presentation 54-31.
Scotts Valley head coach Jim Hart told the Santa Cruz Sentinel, "This is the biggest win in program history. It really shows you the progress everyone has made since last year."
Mitty senior Kelli Hayes had 30 points in the loss. The Monarchs will face Eastside Prep on Tuesday. Eastside junior Destiny Graham had 20 points and eight rebounds on Friday against St. Ignatius.
Defending NCS Division I champion Monte Vista continues its march to a potential repeat after a 61-49 win over Logan. They will face Deer Valley on Wednesday at St. Mary's College. The other semi-final will have Berkeley hosting Santa Rosa.
No. 10 seed Ukiah has reached the NCS Division II semi-finals after knocking off Windsor 43-42. Senior Ally Milone had 16 points in the win. It will face Clayton Valley Charter on Wednesday. (Douglas Benton)