Los Angeles Preps: Parker Jackson-Cartwright

California Supreme off to strong start

May, 1, 2012
It's still technically spring but the basketball summer circuit is already in full swing.

Los Angeles-based club team California Supreme is off to a scorching start in the Nike Elite Youth Basketball League, winning eight of its first nine games at back-to-back weekend tournaments in Minnesota and Virginia. California Supreme, which is coached by former Arizona and Mater Dei star Miles Simon, is headlined by Loyola's Parker Jackson-Cartwright and Santa Monica's Jordan Matthews.

Jackson-Cartwright, one of the top point guard prospects in the class of 2014, is the team's only junior-to-be. Every other player is a rising senior, hoping to catch the eye of college recruiters.

SANTA ANA -- Katin Reinhardt returned to the Mater Dei lineup Tuesday despite playing with a broken thumb. Turns out, he broke Loyola's back.

Reinhardt didn't play like a man injured, but instead a man possessed, and coupled with the performance of Xavier Johnson led top-seeded Mater Dei to a 75-63 victory over Loyola in the semifinal round of the Southern California Regional Championships.

With the home victory over the fourth-seeded Cubs (26-6), Mater Dei (32-2) will play sixth-seeded Fresno Bullard on Saturday, 8 p.m., at Citizens Bank Arena in Ontario. Bullard defeated second-seeded Long Beach Poly, 54-52, on a three-point shot at the buzzer. Bullard is ranked No. 15 in the state, according to Cal-Hi Sports, and Poly is ranked No. 2.

The state's top-ranked team, Mater Dei, is ranked No. 8 in the nation, according to ESPNHS. Loyola was ranked No. 9 in the state.

Mater Dei beat Loyola 61-58 the last time they faced each other, in the Southern Section semifinals; in that game, Loyola's Jacob Hazzard scored 22, but on Tuesday the Monarchs held him to eight.

Last year, Mater Dei won, 72-70, despite trailing by nine in the fourth quarter. Mater Dei went on to win the state title, and nine of Mater Dei's top 10 players are back from last year's team.

Reinhardt scored scored 21, and didn't seem to hit a shot that wasn't big. Johnson spent the second half trying to play the game above the rim on both offense and defense. He scored seven in an 11-1 run to open the fourth quarter in which Mater Dei wiped out a 49-48 deficit. His last two buckets in that span came after getting offensive rebounds.

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Parker-Cartwright powers Loyola victory

March, 10, 2012

LOS ANGELES -- Sophomore sensation is not a term to be used loosely.

In the case of Parker Jackson-Cartwright from Los Angeles Loyola, the moniker is indeed fitting. Come to think of it, the same thing can be said about Etiwanda's Jordan McLaughlin.

The talented underclassmen went toe-to-toe Saturday night. In the end, however, Jackson-Cartwright got the better of the exchange by virtue of his Cubs defeating the McLaughlin-led Eagles, 48-35, in a Division I second-round game of the Southern California Regional playoffs.

“I can't imagine that there are two better sophomores in the state,'' Loyola coach Jamal Adams said. “We're talking about a pair of kids who are going to be high-major college-type of recruits when they're seniors. Both of them are getting a ton of looks already. I had a bunch of coaches and scouts call me this week about the game. Everyone wanted to see Parker and Jordan go at it.''

With the victory, Loyola (26-5) advances to the semifinals on Tuesday night against Santa Ana Mater Dei, a 78-66 winner over Mission Viejo on Saturday. The Monarchs, mind you, did not have standout guard Katin Reinhardt in the lineup. He has a hand injury and will be reevaluated this week.

Jackson-Cartwright was largely -- although not solely -- responsible for the Cubs success. He kept Loyola's stat guru, Andrew Figueras, busy throughout the game. The 5-foot-7 point guard scored a team-high 13 points. Jackson-Cartwright added six rebounds, four steals and a pair of assists.

His counterpart did not have his best game of the season. McLaughlin attempted to keep things close and finished with 10 points, three blocks and two rebounds. Problem was, the 6-foot floor general did not have much help. No other player scored in double digits for Etiwanda (30-3).

“At this stage, in the state tournament, in Division I, it's unique from a fan standpoint to see two players like Jordan and Parker play at such a high level because they are so young,'' Etwiwanda coach Dave Kleckner said. “This game was a preview of things to come for both players.''

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Etiwanda-Loyola: Battle of elite PGs

March, 9, 2012
Loyola's Parker Jackson-Cartwright and Etiwanda's Jordan McLaughlin are, without question, two of the Southland's top basketball prospects. The point guards figure to draw quite an audience Saturday night when their schools meet in the second round of the Division I Southern California Regionals.

The sophomores are quite familiar with each other. They matched up in summer-league games last year and even attended a high school football game together as friends.

They'll meet under different circumstances Saturday: A trip to the regional semifinals -- likely against top-seeded Mater Dei -- is up for grabs.

"I'll play my game, nothing is going to change," said Jackson-Cartwright, the top-ranked player in the state for the 2014 recruiting class who has scholarship offers from the likes of UCLA, USC, Arizona State and Washington. "He's a good player. I'll try to get into him and make it tough for him."

Loyola outlasts Crenshaw in first round

March, 7, 2012

LOS ANGELES -- Julian Harrell still hasn't gotten over Loyola's loss to Mater Dei in the CIF-Southern Section semifinals. He says he thinks about the 10-point lead his team let slip away in the final 10 minutes against the state's top-ranked team and eventual Division 1AA champion.

It happened over a week ago, but the defeat still stings. Loyola used it as motivation Wednesday night, beating Crenshaw 103-91 before a capacity crowd in the first round of the Southern California Regionals.

"I'm not over the loss, to be honest," said Harrell, who scored a team-high 25 points. "I'm still trying to swallow that loss. ... That's in the past, but we do want another shot at [Mater Dei]."

Fourth-seeded Loyola (25-5) will face Etiwanda in the second round Saturday night and, with a win, will likely get another crack at the top-seeded Monarchs in the regional semifinals.

Sharpshooter Jacob Hazzard had 22 points, including four 3-pointers, for the Cubs. Senior Khaliq Bedart-Ghani added 16 and an electrifying breakaway dunk. Super sophomore point guard Parker Jackson-Cartwright had 12 points and 10 assists.

Loyola held a 51-40 lead following an up-and-down, fast-paced first half. Crenshaw had twice fallen behind by double figures but responded with runs, including a 9-0 spurt midway through the second quarter. The Cubs answered with a 17-4 run, highlighted by a pair of dagger 3-pointers from role player Trey Mason.

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Mater Dei survives against Loyola

February, 28, 2012

ANAHEIM -- The two losses Mater Dei has this season came in overtime, so the last thing longtime Mater Dei basketball coach Gary McKnight wanted was to head there.

Senior forward Xavier Johnson sank two clutch free throws and the Monarchs played suffocating defense on the final possession, escaping with a 61-58 win against Loyola in a CIF-Southern Section Division 1A semifinal Tuesday night at the Anaheim Convention Center Arena.

Sharpshooter Jacob Hazzard's potential tying 3-pointer barely left his hand before it was sent back his way. Khaliq Bedart-Ghani grabbed the loose ball and fired a 3-pointer of his own but missed badly, and top-seeded Mater Dei advanced to face second-seeded Long Beach Poly in Saturday night's title game at the same venue.

"I just didn't want it to get to overtime," McKnight said.

Johnson made sure it didn't, recording game-highs of 23 points and 10 rebounds. His electrifying dunk at the end of the third quarter was exactly what a lackadaisical Mater Dei needed to wake up.

"They made one more play than we did," said Loyola coach Jamal Adams, whose team led by as many as nine late in the third quarter. "We played our tails off. No moral victories."

Recent history between the two added intrigue. Last season, defending Division 1A champ Loyola lost to Mater Dei in the Southern California regionals, 72-70, after leading by nine heading into the fourth quarter. The Monarchs went on capture the state crown in Sacramento.

Tuesday night's affair mirrored that closely: Defending state champion Mater Dei (28-2) went on a 9-0 run midway through the fourth to regain control.

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Walt Hazzard's memory alive, well

February, 23, 2012
Jacob HazzardCourtesy of Nick KozaJacob Hazzard will lead Loyola into the CIF-SS Division 1AA quarterfinals on Friday against Upland.

LOS ANGELES -- About an hour before the opening tip, Jacob Hazzard goes through his pregame routine. Sitting alone in the corner of the locker room and seemingly collecting his thoughts, the senior from Los Angeles Loyola pulls out a pen and writes No. 42 on his shoes.

The digits are significant to him, of course. They hold a spot close to his heart.

Hazzard Family
Courtesy of Hazzard familyJacob Hazzard, left, and younger brother Max Hazzard, right, have fond memories of their grandfather, Walt, center, who had a decorated career at UCLA and in the NBA. Walt Hazzard died in November.
No. 42 adorned the jersey of his grandfather, the late Walt Hazzard, during his days in college at UCLA and the NBA thereafter. It's the younger Hazzard's way of not only paying homage to the patriarch of the family, but preparing himself mentally and physically for the task at hand.

“Not a day goes by without me thinking about my grandfather," Jacob Hazzard said. "We always called him Papa. He was a great man, a person worth remembering at all times.''

Walt Hazzard died Nov. 18 at Ronald Reagan UCLA Medical Center. He was 69. He had suffered a stroke in 1996 and endured complications following heart surgery. The loss hit the family hard, to be sure, and was felt throughout the basketball community.

Grandfather's memory lives on, nonetheless. Grandson would not have it any other way.

“Papa was a big influence, a role model, to many people all over the world, not just me,'' Hazzard said. “Growing up, I was like a sponge and tried to soak up all of his knowledge, both on and off the court. He was always there for me, for everyone in our family. I think most knew about him as the great Walt Hazzard. But not many people got to see the grandfather side.

“It was really tough for me when he died. The gym, the basketball court, has been my sanctuary ever since that day. It's the place I have gone to escape and remember all of the good times we had together. It's the place that makes me feel like he's smiling down on me.''

With basketball obviously in his blood, Hazzard appears to be following a path eerily similar to that of his well-known namesake. The 5-foot-10 guard is a key contributor for the Cubs (23-4 overall), who are No. 4 in the ESPNLosAngeles.com top 20 rankings. Hazzard & Co. travel to Upland on Friday night for a Southern Section Division 1AA quarterfinal showdown.

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Loyola capable of Division 1AA glory

February, 14, 2012
If the CIF-Southern Section Division 1AA bracket unravels as many expect it to, fourth-seeded Loyola will get a shot at top-seeded Mater Dei in a dream semifinal matchup at Anaheim Arena on Feb. 28.

Yes, the boys basketball playoffs have yet to tip off and each team still has to win three games, but we're looking ahead for the sake of projection. Some recent history also adds intrigue here: Last season, defending Division 1A champ Loyola lost to Mater Dei in the Southern California regionals, 72-70, after leading by nine heading into the fourth quarter. The Monarchs went on to Sacramento and returned home with another state crown.

Think that hasn't crossed the minds of Loyola players this season?

The Cubs (21-4), at least on paper, stack up well against Mater Dei (24-2). The Monarchs have a dynamic 3-point shooter in Katin Reinhardt, and Loyola has one too in senior guard Jacob Hazzard. Mater Dei's Xavier Johnson, a Colorado signee, is one of the most versatile forwards in the Southland, but Loyola's Julian Harrell, a Pennsylvania signee, could keep up. Each team has solid role players: Mater Dei with Eli Stalzer and Elijah Brown; Loyola with Justin Childress and sharpshooter Trey Mason.

And don't forget about forward Stanley Johnson of Mater Dei and point guard Parker Jackson-Cartwright, maybe the best sophomores in the area.

Loyola, which hosts Trabuco Hills in the first round on Friday, and Mater Dei, which plays Chaparral, appear to be on a collision course. And it's impossible not to consider what may lie ahead.

Blair Angulo covers preps for ESPN Los Angeles. Follow him on Twitter.

No. 3 Loyola 77, Harvard-Westlake 74

February, 3, 2012
NORTHRIDGE -- When prep basketball fans from across the Southland take a look at the final score of Friday's game between Los Angeles Loyola and Harvard-Westlake, chances are that the masses will be under the impression the showdown was close from start to finish.

It wasn't. Far from it, in fact.

Loyola jumped out to a double-digit lead midway through the first half and maintained the advantage for a majority of the second half. Some sloppy play down the stretch, however, resulted in a somewhat close 77-74 Mission League victory at Cal State Northridge.

“We said before the game that we were 20 points better than them, we should have won by more,'' said Loyola's Parker Jackson-Cartwright. “We let them get back into it, but we were not worried. They did not have enough time on the clock to close things out.''

The Cubs (20-3, 18-3) took a nine-point lead with 1:56 remaining in the fourth quarter. The No. 3 team in the ESPNLosAngeles top 20 rankings took it easy from there on out and conceded some rather easy baskets to the desperate Wolverines (15-8, 6-4).

“We have a big rivalry with Harvard-Westlake and I think we put so much energy into building a big lead that we were spent towards the end,'' Loyola coach Jamal Adams said. “I wouldn't say we were overly concerned about coming up short.''

Julian Harrell got off to a quick start. The senior and Penn commit scored 10 points in the first quarter and had 15 in the first half to help Loyola take a 38-26 lead at the break. Harvard-Westlake had trouble stopping Harrell, who finished with 23 points.

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Loyola enjoys the moment against OLu

January, 29, 2012
LOS ANGELES -- The smiles were back. So were the laughs and high fives.

Loyola was back to having fun Saturday night, racing past Orange Lutheran, 92-84, in the headliner at the Fairfax State Preview Classic. After an up-and-down week that saw the Cubs slip a full two games back of Alemany in the Mission League, they needed the confidence.

"It's all about having fun," Loyola coach Jamal Adams said. "It's high school basketball. Results are important to us, but they're just high school kids. They have to enjoy the moment."

Loyola (18-3) was coming off a victory Friday night at Chaminade, but still reeling from a 14-point home loss to Alemany earlier in the week. The Cubs trailed by two at halftime Saturday, but there was no panic.

Not with guard Jacob Hazzard shooting the way he was.

"I felt great, the basket looked as big as the ocean," said Hazzard, who poured in a team-high 23 points, including five 3-pointers that had him raising his arms on the way back to the other end of the floor.

Stellar sophomore point guard Parker Jackson-Cartwright showed exceptional creativity, especially in finding Hazzard by drawing a second defender. Jackson-Cartwright had 15 points, while Justin Childress and Julian Harrell each had 12 to lead the Cubs to a season-high in points scored.

"We started the week off kind of slow, and we had to come into this game with more energy, more intensity," Jackson-Cartwright said. "It's a big win."

Arizona-bound Gabe York of Orange Lutheran was the leading scorer with 25 points. It was his third game since returning from an appendectomy. Darien Williams had 22 and Payton Banks added 18 for OLu (14-7), which has dropped five of its last seven and now has to face Mater Dei and Long Beach Poly -- arguably the region's top two squads -- back to back.

Blair Angulo covers preps for ESPN Los Angeles. Follow him on Twitter.

Prep basketball: Loyola 70, Crespi 52

January, 23, 2012

LOS ANGELES -- With so many options on the offensive end of the floor, sometimes it is difficult for opponents to determine which Loyola prep basketball player on which to focus their collective energy. It was Justin Childress ' turn on Monday night.

The senior guard was seemingly unstoppable from start to finish against visiting Encino Crespi. The Celts had no answer for Childress, who ended up with 17 points for the Cubs in a 70-52 victory in a pivotal Mission League showdown.

“I know that I'm capable of doing my part, you know holding my own, when my number is called for this team,'' Childress said. “I felt like I owed it to my teammates to step up. We needed this win, it puts us right back into race for the title.''

With the victory, Loyola (16-2, 5-2) is a game behind first-place Mission Hills Alemany in the league standings. Moreover, the result gives the Cubs, No. 4 in the ESPNLosAngeles.com top 20 rankings, added confidence moving forward.

The Celts (18-3, 5-2), on the other hand, took a step back. Ranked No. 6 in the most recent poll, Crespi needs to rebound from the loss quickly.

“Justin got off tonight for us, and it's not all that surprising, he's been rock solid for us all year long,'' Loyola coach Jamal Adams said.

The Cubs have four players who average 10 or more points per game, with Childress being one of them, of course. Julian Harrell, Jacob Hazzard and Parker Jackson-Cartwright are the others.

Similar to the first half, Childress was hot in the second half. He scored five points and the Cubs extended their lead to 14 points at the the end of three.

It was more of the same in the fourth quarter as Childress & Co. successfully maintained a double-digit lead and were up by as many as 20 points during one stretch.

“It's hard to matchup against Loyola, it's hard to stop all of their key players. We had a tough time,'' Crespi coach Russell White said.

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Harrell prefers substance over style

January, 17, 2012

LOS ANGELES -- Julian Harrell is not one of those flashy type of basketball players. Fundamentally sound more accurately describes his repertoire on the hardwood, a rare trait in this day and age when most individuals are trying to become the next Internet sensation.

[+] EnlargeHarrell
Courtesy of Nick KozaJulian Harrell has Loyola off to a 14-2 start and already has committed to the University of Pennsylvania.
The senior from Los Angeles Loyola understands the nuances of the game and does the little things that don't necessarily show up in the box score. Hustling and diving for loose balls comes naturally. Another redeeming quality is a no-nonsense approach to playing defense.

Rest assured, Harrell can also stuff the stat sheet. One need not look any further than his team highs in number of different categories this season for proof. Whenever the Cubs need a big bucket, someone to crash the boards or a timely assist, they typically turn to him.

Considering everything that Harrell brings to the table, you begin to understand why the University of Pennsylvania commit is regarded as one of the Southland's premier players and why Loyola is thought to be one the premier programs in the greater Los Angeles area.

“Julian, we like to call him Ju Ju, has done some extraordinary things in his time here with us, that's no exaggeration either,'' Loyola coach Jamal Adams said. “He's not going to end up on some And1 mix-tape or anything like that. His highlight film is done differently, and if you ask me or any other hoops fan, his moves are just as entertaining as anyone else out there.

“He's a throwback in a lot of ways. Ju Ju is well-rounded and can do just about anything asked of him. He's played all five positions on the floor for me. He's versatile. I love his game. He's efficient. There's not a lot of wasted movement. All of the intangibles are there. He's a coach's dream. We are going to miss him once he graduates and moves on the next level.''

In the meantime, its business as usual for Harrell & Co.

Loyola (14-2 overall) got off to somewhat of a slow start this season with a couple of surprising losses in the traditionally tough Mission League. The setbacks are nothing more than a distant memory for the Cubs, No. 5 in the ESPNLosAngeles.com top 20 rankings.

Next up: Two important league games, the first on Saturday night at La Canada St. Francis. Thereafter, a showdown at home against Encino Crespi, No. 4 in the recent ESPNLosAngeles.com rankings, looms large on Jan. 23. Harrell will be expected to carry the load for the Cubs, of course, similar to how the 6-foot-5 shooting guard has done so many times in the recent past.

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Crespi hands Loyola its first loss

January, 4, 2012

ENCINO -- Crespi’s London Perrantes came through with one of the biggest shots in his high school career. His little jumper in the paint with 2.9 seconds left was the difference in Crespi’s 75-73 win over Loyola in the Mission League opener at Crespi High School on Wednesday night.

Crespi (14-1) handed Loyola (11-1), winners of 11 games in a row to open the season, its first loss. Perrantes, who came into the game as the leading scorer on Crespi with 14.8 points per game, led four Crespi players in double figures.

Crespi coach Russell White said the plan was to let Perrantes decide the fate of the game.

“Get it in his hands and have him make a play,” White said.

Crespi had to rally on its home court. Down by 10 points in the first half, Crespi battled back to tie the score at 62-62 midway through the fourth quarter.

“We left a lot of plays out there on the floor,” Loyola coach Jamal Adams said. “Hopefully it will get our guys' attention. We have some things to work on.”

Christian Johnson came up big for Crespi in the fourth quarter. He scored eight of his 15 points in the final period, draining five clutch free throws and hitting a crucial 3-pointer.

“It’s a game. It has ebbs and flows,” White said. “He made some big plays.”

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L.A. South: Boys' basketball Top 10

December, 6, 2011
Loyola, Long Beach Poly and La Verne Lutheran are ranked in the preseason POWERADE ESPNHS Fab 50 national rankings, and they lead the way in our opening edition of the south Los Angeles County boys' basketball top 10:

1. Loyola (4-0)
Key players: PG Parker Jackson-Cartwright, SG Justin Childress, SG Jacob Hazzard, SF Julian Harrell (Penn)
Last season: The Cubs went 25-6 and won the CIF-Southern Section Div. I-A championship before losing by two to eventual state champion Mater Dei in regionals.
Why they're here: Jackson-Cartwright, only a sophomore, is already considered the top point guard in the state. Mix in the shooting of Childress and Hazzard -- as well as the versatility of Harrell -- and the Cubs have a lineup that few can match.

2. Long Beach Poly (3-1)
Key players: SF Roschon Prince, PF Jordan Bell, PG Chris Croom, SG Reuben Strickland
Last season: The Jackrabbits posted a 30-2 record and captured the Division 1AA title in Anaheim before losing to eventual state champion Mater Dei in regionals.
Why they're here: Poly coach Sharrief Metoyer lost his top two to graduation -- state player of the year Ryan Anderson (Boston College) and Alexis Moore (USC) -- but there's more than enough talent left. Prince and Bell might be the best one-two combination in the county.

3. La Verne Lutheran (4-0)
Key players: PF Grant Jerrett (Arizona), SG Eric Cooper Jr. (Arizona), SF McKay Anderson, SG Cameron Osorno
Last season: The Trojans overcame off-the-court adversity, finishing with a 25-5 mark and a second consecutive state championship.
Why they're here: Jerrett, a long and lean power forward, is arguably the top prospect on the West Coast. Coach Eric Cooper Sr. returns nine letter-winners from last year's team, including son Eric Cooper Jr., a sharp-shooting junior who makes teams pay for double-teaming Jerrett down low.

4. St. John Bosco (4-0)
Key players: SG Isaac Hamilton, PF Anthony January (UTEP), SF Darryl Matthews, SG Daniel Hamilton
Last season: The Braves finished 21-9 and were eliminated in the quarterfinals of the CIF-SS Division 4AA playoffs.
Why they're here: New coach Derrick Taylor, who built Woodland Hills Taft into a City Section power, has the Braves thinking about the Trinity League crown. Getting past defending state champion Mater Dei won't be easy, but Bosco has Isaac Hamilton, a transfer from Crenshaw who is one of the nation's top juniors.

5. Price (3-1)
Key players: PF Skylar Spencer (San Diego State), PG Chance Murray, SG Chris Sandifer
Last season: The high-flying Knights went 24-8 and fell just short against La Caņada in the CIF-SS Division 3AA championship game.
Why they're here: Yes, Price lost guard Askia Booker (Colorado) and ultra athletic forward Norvel Pelle to graduation but don't dismiss coach Michael Lynch's bunch. Spencer is another high-soaring scorer who's lethal in fast break opportunities, and Murray, a junior, already has a scholarship offer from UCLA.

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LA North: Winners and losers from the SoCal Regionals

March, 11, 2011


Second round, Thursday

Division I

Mater Dei 72, Loyola 70: Seconds after hitting a 3-pointer to pull Loyola within one point, freshman point guard Parker Jackson-Cartwright missed a 3-pointer at the buzzer that would have given his team the win. Joe Stein made four 3-pointers and scored 17 points for Loyola.

Taft 65, Carlsbad La Costa Canyon 43: CJ Blackwell scored 20 points and had 17 rebounds in Taft’s win over La Costa Canyon. Taft owned the boards in this game. The Toreadors outrebounded La Costa Canyon 53-22. Blackwell pulled down eight offensive rebounds. Stephen Maxwell grabbed 11 rebounds for Taft.

Division II

Summit 66, Ventura 45: Ventura saw its magical season come to an end. Summit hit 10 3-pointers and eliminated the second-seeded Cougars from the Southern California Regional. Ventura also saw its 12-game home winning streak snapped. Dylan Houck scored a team-high 13 points for Ventura in the loss.

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