Los Angeles Preps: Drew Kitchens

LA North: CIF State Division I playoffs No. 3 Taft vs. La Costa Canyon

March, 9, 2011
CIF Boys Basketball State Division I playoffs

No.3 Woodland Hills Taft (28-2) vs. Carlsbad La Costa Canyon (29-4)

Second round

Woodland Hills Taft coach Derrick Taylor describes the La Costa Canyon boys' basketball team as “free-spirited.”

“They can really shoot that basketball like no tomorrow,” Taylor said.

Taylor’s players can shoot too. They put on quite an overpowering display against Clovis West in the first round of the CIF State playoffs on Tuesday night. Taft shot 55 percent from the field in an 83-45 blowout. The Toreadors were 19-for-28 from the field in the second half, making nearly 68 percent of their shots.

Stephen Maxwell hit 8-of-12 shots from the field for a team-high 17 points. Center Kevin Johnson was 6-of-8 from the field, mostly easy layups and dunks, and scored 12 points.

La Costa Canyon might shoot the ball with reckless abandon, but so does Taft at times. Taylor said he expected an up-tempo game, a style he would prefer.

“They just play,” Taylor said. “It’s easy to get uptight. I just want to compete. With talent and a willingness to compete, you always have a shot.”

Here are the five keys to the game for Taft:

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