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Taft Trips Chatsworth as Thomas Scores 25

December 19, 1987|CHRIS J. PARKER | Times Staff Writer

When Taft High fell behind by eight points to Chatsworth on Friday night, it appeared as if the Toreadors were headed for an upset.

But fortunately for Taft, the Toreadors don't have a doubting Thomas--they have a Dedan Thomas.

The 5-11 junior guard scored 25 points and turned Taft's impending doom into a 78-58 rout of Chatsworth in a North Hollywood tournament semifinal.

Taft will play North Hollywood, a 68-38 winner over El Camino Real, in the final at 8:30 tonight.

Trailing, 33-25, at the start of the second half, Taft--behind the aggressive playmaking of Thomas--went on a 13-2 scoring spurt to take a 38-35 lead.

Although Thomas was limited to one point in the third quarter, he fed Anthony Moten four times on the perimeter and Moten responded with 12 third-quarter points.

By the fourth quarter, Chatsworth was overplaying the pass to Moten and Thomas was able to penetrate the lane. He had 14 points in the fourth and finished with 12 assists.

"In the second half, he really took charge. Dedan's the best ballhandler I've ever coached," Taft Coach Jim Woodard said.

Chatsworth's Rick Garrick scored a game-high 25 points. Chatsworth will play El Camino Real for third place at 7 tonight.

In other games, North Hollywood advanced to the final by defeating El Camino Real, 68-38, behind Danny Klein's 22 points, 7 assists and 4 steals. Grant, which defeated Bell-Jeff, 70-68, on Adi Saker's layup with four seconds left, will meet Granada Hills in the consolation championship at 5:30 tonight.

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