Los Angeles Preps: Evan Jenkins

Inland Empire: Winners and losers from Thursday's SoCal Regionals

March, 11, 2011
Looking back, even the losses don’t seem so bad anymore.

The Fontana Summit boys’ basketball team never quite received the respect it deserved this season, mainly due to its lukewarm 10-6 start to the season.

The SkyHawks were seeded No. 6 in the Southern Section Division 2AA playoffs and marched into the semifinals. They were awarded an at-large berth into the Southern California Regional Division 2 playoffs and were seeded 10th.

After winning its opener in overtime, Summit scored its biggest upset of the season Thursday night, traveling to second-seeded Ventura and dominating from start to finish in the 66-45 victory. Ventura won the Division 2AA title last weekend.

Summit will meet Palos Verdes Peninsula in Saturday’s semifinals. Thanks to a couple of other upsets on the same side of the bracket, the SkyHawks are seeded higher than the Panthers, giving them home-court advantage. After traveling to Harbor City for their first-round game Tuesday, then to Ventura less than 48 hours later, the SkyHawks should appreciate the opportunity to play in their own gym.

Summit hasn’t lost at home this season. All of their defeats occurred during pre-league tournaments and showcases. Two defeats came against Etiwanda, a Southern Section Division 1AA semifinalist, another to Division 1AA finalist Corona Centennial and one to San Diego Section Division I champion Carlsbad La Costa Canyon.

Eagles can’t get past Jackrabbits...again

Etiwanda coach Dave Kleckner will spend another offseason seeing everything in green and gold, but it won’t be the good kind.

Those are the school colors of Long Beach Poly, which ended the Eagles' season for the second consecutive year with a 66-63 victory Thursday night in a Division 1 regional quarterfinal at Long Beach City College.

During the last two postseasons, Etiwanda has played the Jackrabbits four times and lost three. The Eagles made a valiant comeback from 14 points down at the start of the fourth quarter and had a chance to tie on Jordan Daniels' last-second 3-point attempt.

Byron Wesley scored 18 points in his last game for Etiwanda before heading off to USC. Tyler LaCour pitched in 17.

Long Beach Poly moves on to play Mater Dei on Saturday at Long Beach City College beginning at 7 p.m. In the other Division 1 semifinal, second-seeded Corona Centennial will host third-seeded Woodland Hills Taft at 5 p.m. at Eastvale Roosevelt High.

For the Eagles, it’s back to the drawing board. They graduate their top five scorers in Wesley, Daniels, LaCour, Troy Fiawoo and Evan Jenkins. Look for them to rebuild around their next star, freshman guard Jordan McLaughlin.

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Inland Empire: Boys' basketball top 10

January, 18, 2011
A tough week for Upland was countered by eye-opening wins by Rialto Eisenhower and Rancho Cucamonga Los Osos. Victorville Victor Valley also suffered a surprising defeat in Desert Sky League play but the Jackrabbits redeemed themselves with a solid win over the weekend.

1. Etiwanda, 18-0 (1) – The Eagles found themselves in the rare position of being down late in a game Monday night against Ventura, but Evan Jenkins scored on a layup with 9.9 seconds remaining to give Etiwanda a 52-51 victory at the Martin Luther King showcase at Los Osos. The Eagles came into last week ranked No. 2 in Division 1AA, Ventura was No. 4 in Division 2AA. Next up: Friday at Los Osos.

2. Corona Centennial, 14-3 (2) – The Huskies are picking up where the school’s football team left off, pummeling one Big VIII League opponent after another. Last week it was 82-33 over Norco and 97-49 over Corona. Next up: Tonight vs. Corona Santiago at Centennial.

3. Murrieta Valley, 15-3 (3) – The Nighthawks survived a tough Southwestern League opener Wednesday against Temecula Valley and won, 67-61. They had an easier time Friday against Temecula Great Oak, but then ran into Orange Lutheran, the top-ranked team in Division 4AA, and lost, 82-60. Next up: Wednesday at Murrieta Mesa.

4. Moreno Valley Rancho Verde, 15-3 (4) – The Mustangs went 3-0 last week with Inland Valley League wins against Canyon Springs, Valley View and La Sierra. In the 66-44 victory Friday night against La Sierra, freshman DeShon Taylor made 10 three-pointers and scored 32 points. Next up: Wednesday at Moreno Valley.

5. Eisenhower, 10-6 (8) – The Eagles are rolling on all cylinders after sputtering over the holiday break. Keyon Sayles scored a career-high 37 points in a 96-78 victory Friday night at Redlands East Valley, considered their biggest challenger for a fifth consecutive Citrus Belt League title. Next up: Tonight at Redlands.

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