Escondido High School Coach Mike Williams thinks he has a good boys' basketball team, but El Camino overwhelmed his Cougars, 106-56, in an Avocado League game Friday night at Escondido.
"We're an above average team," Williams said, "but they're very good. They've got to be the No. 1 team in the county. We were no match for them tonight. There's no way we could stay with them."
El Camino (1-0 in league, 12-2 overall) raced to a 26-10 lead after the first quarter and extended it to 57-20 at halftime. The Wildcats, who were led by Ken Crawford's 32 points, had five players in double figures. Edmund Johnson and Kevin Taylor each scored 18 and Randy Hale and Nate Reed each scored 11. Jose Velazquez scored 14 for Escondido (1-1, 7-6).
Was it El Camino's best game of the season?
"Defensively it was," El Camino Coach Ray Johnson said, "especially in the first half. I know we scored a lot of points, but it was because of our defense. We forced a lot of turnovers and scored a lot of easy baskets off of them.
"Escondido's a good team, but we just took them out of their game tonight. I was a little concerned because we hadn't played in two weeks. But things worked out."
It was El Camino's 10th-straight win. The Wildcats defeated Poway, The Times' No. 1 team, 43-42, in the Lt. James Mitchell Tournament.
In another Avocado League game:
Carlsbad 66, San Marcos 54--Tony Trousset scored 20 points and pulled down 10 rebounds to lead the Lancers (1-1, 4-8) past the Knights (0-2, 1-9) at Carlsbad. Shaun Stoll added 11 points and 11 rebounds to help Carlsbad.
METRO CONFERENCE Castle Park 68, Hilltop 58--Eddie Moreno scored 19 points and Javier Nunez added 10 to lead the Trojans (4-0, 13-1) past the Lancers (3-1, 9-9) at Castle Park. Castle Park outscored Hilltop, 17-8, in the final quarter to pull away. David Mossman paced Hilltop with 18 points.
Bonita Vista 57, Southwest 56 (OT)--Bonita Vista needed two free throws from Doug Piper to overcome a 56-55 Southwest lead in overtime and avert an upset at Bonita Vista. The Barons (4-0, 8-5) led Southwest (0-4, 0-14), 47-38, after three quarters, but Southwest outscored Bonita Vista, 14-5, in the fourth quarter to send the game into overtime. Matt Arocci led Bonita Vista with 19 points and Kip Korzep added 13. John Walker scored 19 for Southwest and Sao Marcos added 18.
Sweetwater 82, Coronado 39--The No. 7-ranked Red Devils (3-1, 9-6) snapped a two-game losing streak by racing past the Islanders (0-4, 2-7) at Sweetwater. Mahlon Williams scored 22 points and Matt Simmons added 19 to help the Red Devils who were coming off consecutive losses to Castle Park and Madison.
Chula Vista 83, Mar Vista 43--Chula Vista took a 19-7 first-quarter advantage and was never threatened in a game played at Mar Vista. Tony Hyner led the Spartans (3-1, 9-8) with 17 points. Jeff Knight scored 16 and Joe Klancher 15. Jim McClusky, with 18, was the only Mar Vista player in double figures. The Mariners are 0-4 and 2-11.
PALOMAR LEAGUE Mount Carmel 71, Orange Glen 70 (OT)--A basket by Mark Smith put the Sundevils ahead to stay, 69-68, and two free throws by John Krainock clinched the victory for Mount Carmel (2-0, 9-5) at home. Scott Boggins led the winners with 19, Jim Tejcek scored 14 and Krainock 12. Orange Glen (0-1, 4-10) was led by Corey Kelley's 15 points.
Vista 56, Torrey Pines 44--Mike Jones scored 13 points and two other players scored in double figures to lead the Panthers (1-1, 5-7) past the Falcons (0-2, 5-9) at Vista. Jeff Steffen scored 13 points to lead Torrey Pines but the Falcons were unable to rally from a 34-19 halftime deficit.
NONLEAGUE Ramona 59, Fallbrook 52--Mike Paendell scored 17 points to lead the Bulldogs (7-4) past the Warriors (4-7) at Ramona. Robert Cronic scored 11 points and Steve Clancy added 10 to help Ramona.
Crawford 58, Clairemont 33--Three starters--Mark Hayes, Paul Franklin and Kevin Williams--were held out of the game by Crawford Coach James Sams because of an altercation earlier this week in a game against University, but Crawford (7-5) still knocked off the Chiefs (1-10). Dondi Bell scored 24 points and pulled down 19 rebounds, and Bret Cook had 10 points, six steals and six assists to help the Colts. Jason Deal scored 14 points to lead Clairemont.
Serra 75, Hoover 58--Steve Smith, Deven Moran and Anthony Moore continued to sizzle as No. 4-ranked Serra (11-1) won its sixth straight game, defeating the Cardinals (5-9) at Serra. The trio, which came into Friday's game averaging 50 points per game, combined for 63 points against Hoover, led by Smith's 27 points. Ken Matthews scored 23 to lead the Cardinals.
Mira Mesa 44, Mission Bay 43--A long shot at the buzzer missed as Mission Bay failed in its bid for an upset of The Times' No. 5 team at Mission Bay. Duane Lee led Mira Mesa (9-4) with 18 points and Scott Cummings scored 10. Tony Richards scored 16 points for Mission Bay. Paul Williams scored 13 and Rick Fried 10 for the Buccaneers.
Poway 74, San Dieguito 49--Dominick Johnson and Jud Buechler combined for 52 points as The Times' No. 1 team coasted at San Dieguito High. Johnson scored 28 points and had 17 rebounds and Buechler scored 24. Poway (2-0, 11-3) jumped to 34-18 halftime lead. San Dieguito is 0-2 and 7-8.
In the Grossmont League:
Mount Miguel 57, El Cajon 45-Marcus Edge scored 16 points and Gus Lopez added 14 to help the Matadors (5-1, 8-5) retain sole possesion of first place in the league with a win over the Braves (2-4, 5-8).