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Prep Flashback : This Week In County Prep Sports History

December 27, 1990|Researched by ARA NAJARIAN, Times Staff Writer


A baskaholic.

That's the word Orange High School Coach Don Frank came up with when asked to describe his high-scoring guard, Todd Mezzulo.

"Todd spends six to seven hours a day working on his shooting," Frank said.

And the practice paid off. Mezzulo scored 37 points in Orange's 82-57 victory over Chaffey in the opening round of the Orange Optimist Tournament.

Mezzulo was 17 for 24 from the floor and three for three on free throws; he missed the tournament record by six points. He would have had a good chance to break the record but Frank cleared his bench with nearly five minutes left.

"We don't play for records," Frank said. "We were way in front and I have to be fair to the other players. They work hard all week, too."


Mater Dei Coach Gary McKnight, who had not lost a game to a county team since taking over the Mater Dei basketball program in 1982, faced a big threat, Capistrano Valley, in the championship of the Orange tournament.

"It will be a classic matchup. You'll see eight Division I players on the court," McKnight said. "It's the two-best teams in the county playing each other and that's the way it should be."

Five of the players, Nathan Call and Jason Trask of Capistrano Valley and LeRon Ellis, Tom Peabody and Stuart Thomas of Mater Dei went on to Division I schools.

As with many games that are expected to be "showdowns," the final result was lopsided. Mater Dei won the Orange tournament title with a 67-54 victory.


Did Someone Mention David and Goliath?: Mission Viejo Coach Bob Minier came up with a plan to beat Los Alamitos and its 6-foot-11 center, Robert Conlisk: "We wanted to make it a free-for-all out there."

Mission Viejo, which used a press throughout the game and tried to create as much mayhem as possible, defeated Los Alamitos, 56-42, in a semifinal game of the Estancia tournament.

"If we sat back and packed the defense in, they would have killed us," Minier said. "We felt if we could get the tempo going, we could take Conlisk out of the game. We wanted to make him have to run up and down the court--if we did that we thought he would pick up some fouls along the way."

The scheme was a tribute to Conlisk, who averaged 20 points a game. But Conlisk was in foul trouble throughout the game and finished with four points and five rebounds.

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