Life is back to normal in the East Valley League.
There will be no more talk about Grant High's team-oriented offense and how--with a little bit of luck, a lot of sweat and three tablespoons of salt--the itsy-bitsy Lancers are the best team in the league.
North Hollywood, the husky guys with the 6-7, 6-3, 6-3 front line, finally did what was expected of them. The Huskies knocked off the Lancers, they stomped on them, they pummeled them the way Goliath never could do to David.
"You can call it an annihilation," Grant forward Danny Enowitz said.
Or how about just a satisfying win. Because North Hollywood's 76-59 league victory at home Tuesday was exactly that.
Grant's 11-game winning streak was snapped and both teams are tied for first in the league with 8-1 records. They play their final league game Thursday--North Hollywood (15-4 overall) visits Van Nuys, the league's third-place team, while Grant (16-3) plays host to Verdugo Hills (0-9 in league play).
For the Record
Los Angeles Times Thursday February 11, 1988 Valley Edition Sports Part 3 Page 13 Column 1 Zones Desk 1 inches; 21 words Type of Material: Correction
A photograph caption in Wednesday's edition incorrectly identified a North Hollywood High basketball player. The player is guard Tommy Byrdsong.
"That was our best game, by far, of the year," North Hollywood Coach Steve Miller said.
Many would say it's about time. North Hollywood was a preseason favorite to win the league title and make a strong run at the City Section 3-A Division championship. Instead, the Huskies struggled against three weaker league opponents and fell to Grant the last time the teams met, 47-41.
But this time, the Huskies romped in their own gym, where they are 14-1 in league games over the past three years. "Miller really psyched us up," North Hollywood forward Dominic Nappi said. "He was positive. He didn't have any negatives and it rubbed off. We were thinking we weren't going to lose in our own gym."
Nappi helped make sure. The 6-7 All-City senior had 26 points, a season-high 10 rebounds and scored 12 points in the third quarter when North Hollywood outscored Grant, 27-10. Nappi, who is averaging 18.4 points a game, made 12 of 16 shots.
"Tonight was his best game," Miller said. "He was the dominating player."
But he was not the only one for North Hollywood, which was playing without starting forward Alan Breslauer. Guard Danny Klein had 16 points and 7 assists, forward Rashe Dorsey had 10 points and 7 rebounds and sophomore center Dana Jones had 7 points and 12 rebounds.
"They took it to us. They beat us in every facet of the game," Enowitz said.
And North Hollywood really took it to Grant in the third quarter by turning a 34-27 halftime lead into a 24-point blowout. "We turned it up a notch, in terms of intensity, and it created a lot of points for us," Miller said.