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ATHLETE OF THE WEEK : MacLean Sheds Weight, Gains School Records

February 10, 1988|TIM BROWN

Don MacLean shed three pounds last week, which should not be such a big deal when you weigh 220 pounds. But for MacLean, Simi Valley High's 6-foot, 10-inch center, it had something to do with a record-breaking week in basketball.

In the midst of his mini-diet, MacLean scored 101 points and grabbed 39 rebounds in three games, including a 52-point, 11-rebound effort Friday against Camarillo. His 29 points against Royal four days earlier broke the single-season scoring mark set by Scott Simcik.

MacLean has 810 points--96 more than Simcik scored in 1978. Simcik set the single-game record of 51 in 1978, also against Camarillo.

Those records might be gone from the record book, but Simcik is not forgotten by MacLean.

After playing for Gene Bartow at the University of Alabama-Birmingham, Simcik, 27, set up residence in Birmingham, where he runs "Inches A-Weigh" health spas for women. He saw Simi Valley play in the preseason Las Vegas Invitational, in which the Pioneers lost in the final.

"Scott's helped me with my game a little bit," MacLean said. "He's a real motivator. I talked to him after I broke his career mark and he wasn't upset about it. I really respect him for the great player he was."

Simcik, whose parents still live in Simi Valley, heard of his records falling, and Tuesday drafted a letter of congratulations to MacLean.

"I'm just as happy and elated as I possibly could be," Simcik, a 6-2 guard, said. "Don is probably the finest-shooting 6-10 man I've ever played with. He shoots the 18- and 20-footers like I did."

While battling a cold the past week, MacLean did without several calories and lost the weight. He said the slight difference made him lighter on his feet and quicker for his feats.

"I was eating too much junk food and too much desserts," he said. "Two-twenty is a good weight, and I'm going to have to gain weight for college, but I felt a little tired during the Westlake game."

MacLean scored a season-low 20 points in the Pioneers' 74-65 win over the Warriors, but the victory clinched Simi Valley's third consecutive Marmonte League title.

The Pioneers then trounced Camarillo, 104-71, on Friday.

Simi Valley has won 12 consecutive games, including all 11 in league play, and is 21-3 overall.

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