The Hilmar (9-4) High boys basketball team is confident heading into league play after finishing their preseason with a winning record.
Although the Trans Valley League will be a dog fight and the favorites in Ripon have arguably the best guard tandem, Hilmar knows they can compete.
The Yellowjackets ended the 2015 year and final preseason game with an 83-47 victory over Waterford on Tuesday.
“Tonight we had a good team effort, well-balanced scoring and we played good defense and came out on top and it was actually one of our better efforts,” said Hilmar head coach Paul Willis.
Hilmar outscored Waterford 21-14 in the first quarter and led 32-17, never trailing for the entire game.
The ‘Jackets extended their lead to 20 points in the third but Waterford cut it to 12 before Hilmar’s 30-9 run in the fourth ended any hope for an upset and Hilmar notched their fifth win out of the last six contests.
Five players were in double figures for Hilmar. Nino Ta-a finished with a team-high 16 points, Nick Olvera had 15 points, Kole Gaglio added 14 points and Brock Tate and Alec Cano each had 10 points.
“When you have five guys score in double figures then you will be successful,” said Willis. “It all starts Tuesday for us, but I think we are prepared. Our preseason gave us confidence, but Ripon is such a tough team, they will be a challenge.”
Hilmar will begin TVL play next week at home against Ripon at 7:30 p.m. Tuesday.
TC girls fall in first two games of West Coast Jamboree
After two days at the West Coast Jamboree, the Turlock Christian (8-3) High girls basketball team is winless, losing to Chico in the opener on Monday, 73-32, followed with a loss to The Bay School of San Francisco, 59-51, on Tuesday.
Competing in a tough Coral bracket, TC head coach Edwin Santiago knew the stiff competition would present a challenge unlike any they have seen this year and the team faced it dead on.
“At first we lost to a strong Chico High team,” said Santiago. “We learned that sometimes you get more out of a loss than a win. In losing such a large margin we won in resiliency and character development.”
Aimee Jones was the Eagles' leading scorer with 8 points and she contributed 4 steals defensively.
The Eagles came back on Tuesday to a challenge a Bay School of San Francisco, but couldn't quite pull it together and eventually lost by less than double digits.
The Eagles had a stronger presence in this game with Brooke Rodrigues adding 6 blocks and McCallister Russell leading all players with a game-high 16 rebounds.
Russell was also TC’s top scorer with 19 points, finishing with a double-double. Cassie Balswick added 4 points, 9 assists and 6 steals.
“The game was decided by the speed of The Bay School of San Francisco. They out ran us today,” said Santiago. “Our girls fought to keep up and were able to keep the game close, but we were not able to catch them.”
TC turned the ball over 35 times for the game after coming away with 19 steals.
The Eagles will next take on Las Lomas at 10:30 a.m. today.