NORTH HOLLYWOOD -- Austin McBroom might not be the most well-known point guard in the Southland. But that doesn’t necessarily mean the 5-foot-11 senior for the Campbell Hall High boys’ basketball team is an afterthought when talk takes place about the top floor generals around.
On Tuesday night, McBroom showed glimpses of his potential and finished with 22 points, five rebounds and four assists. Ultimately, foul trouble limited his effectiveness, and as a result, the individual effort came up a tad bit short in a 79-67 loss to visiting Los Angeles Windward in an Alpha League opener for both schools.
McBroom & Co. jumped out to a 19-12 lead toward the end of the first quarter. But behind Wesley Saunders, the Wildcats (9-5) answered. The Harvard-bound senior scored 10 of his 15 first half points in the second quarter as Windward tied the score at 25-25 before the break and took a nine-point advantage at intermission.
Try as he might, McBroom attempted to keep the Vikings (11-5) somewhat close in the second half and they cut the deficit to 10 points early in the fourth quarter.
Saunders was too tough when it mattered most. He ended up with 33 points and 10 rebounds to help the Wildcats keep their distance down the stretch.
ESPNU ranks point guards such as Woodland Hills Taft’s Spencer Dinwiddie, Corona Centennial’s Michael Caffey and Bellflower St. John Bosco’s Cezar Guerrero ahead of McBroom. The same can be said about Los Angeles Price’s Askia Booker, Etiwanda’s Jordan Daniels and Long Beach Poly’s Alexis Moore, each of whom is more highly regarded than the Campbell Hall playmaker.
Nevertheless, McBroom goes about business rather quietly, but his numbers are right on par, in some cases better, than most his peers. And stuffing the stat sheet against Windward on Tuesday evening is a good indication of his talent.
In 16 games this season, McBroom has done a little bit of everything, most of it well. He is averaging 22 points, four assists, three rebounds and three steals per game.
In late November, he had a triple-double against Sun Valley Poly, finishing with 12 points, 10 assists and 10 steals. McBroom nearly duplicated the feat against North Hollywood in early December when he had 18 points, seven steals and six assists. About 10 days later, he ended up with 35 points, eight rebounds and seven assists against Sylmar.
Chances are, McBroom will continue to do more of the same moving forward. In fact, the Vikings need their point guard to be threat on a nightly basis to be successful.
As for the lack of recognition up to this point, it doesn’t appear to bother McBroom much. And if the slight ever was an issue, he certainly hasn’t let it affect his play on the court.