Local high school basketball teams are in the final throes of the North Bay League schedule this week, as Analy and El Molino boys squads look to close it out on a winning note.
Both teams logged a pair of outings in recent NBL action, with the Lions achieving a split in games against Maria Carrillo (69-45 loss) and Ukiah (62-54 win) while the Flying Tigers came out on the short end of games against Piner (66-53) and Windsor (38-36).
At press time Analy was preparing to finish the season with road dates at Montgomery (Feb. 5) and Santa Rosa (Feb. 7), while El Molino closes it out with home games against Healdsburg (Feb. 5) and Rancho Cotate (Feb. 7). Tip-off times for the JV and varsity are 6 and 7:30 p.m.
Lions notch win
El Molino (1-7, 3-21) began its latest stretch with a challenging Jan. 29 visit to Maria Carrillo, a tough assignment for opposing teams. The outcome was predictable, as the Pumas raced to a 34-13 halftime lead en route to a 69-45 rout.
“We knew this would be a tough game,” El Mo coach Collin Walker said. “Maria Carrillo almost lost a close game to Ukiah because they were overlooking them. I knew that would not be the case.”
Leading scorers for the Lions were Abel Perez (8 points), Pat Atkinson (7 points), Kaiden Kliegl (6 points), Trenton Rivas (6 points) and Saben Atteberry (6 points).
The Lions were riding an 11-game losing streak when they took the court on Jan. 31, determined to snap the skid against the visiting Ukiah Wildcats.
El Mo used the added motivation to their advantage, reeling off a 15-9 second-quarter run to grab a 24-22 edge at the half. The Lions kept their foot on the gas in the final two quarters to notch a much-needed 62-54 victory.
“Our guys were confident and with the ‘pack the gym’ theme, the fans (most notably the student body) were in full throat,” Collins noted. “We traded shots back and forth like a heavyweight fight to open the game and were able to get key stops when we needed them that didn’t allow Ukiah to get on a roll.”
Top point scorers for the Lions were Atteberry (17), Atkinson (16), Perez (12), Rivas (7) and Aiden Louis (6).
Tigers drop a pair
Analy (0-7, 9-15) was also in search of wins in their Jan. 29 meeting with visiting Piner, but the Prospectors showed no sympathy in powering to a 66-53 win (no stats reported).
The Tigers rebounded from a sluggish start two nights later against Windsor, with the Jaguars gaining brief separation with a 15-9 second-quarter run for a 21-13 halftime lead. Windsor extended the advantage to 10 points after three, but the Tigers clawed back with a furious fourth-quarter rally that would come up just short in a 36-34 Jaguar’s victory. Hayden Davison led the charge with 13 points.