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BASKETBALL ROUNDUP : Golden Eagles Get Their Wings Clipped


It was a short stay alone atop the California Collegiate Athletic Assn. standings for the Cal State Los Angeles men's basketball team.

Cal State L.A., seeking its first conference title since 1960, entered the Thursday night game at Cal State Dominguez Hills as the association's only unbeaten team but left with a 76-61 loss.

The Golden Eagles' defeat has created a battle for the top seed in the four-team CCAA postseason tournament.

Cal State L.A. fell to 3-1 and into a tie for the conference lead with Cal State Bakersfield, the defending NCAA Division II champion, heading into Saturday night's home game against Cal Poly San Luis Obispo. Dominguez Hills and UC Riverside were tied for second at 3-2.

"This was a really huge win for us tonight," said Cal State Dominguez Hills center Alex Del Hierro, a 6-foot-8 junior from Bell High.

"All week long we were focusing on Cal State L.A., knowing that they were on top. Our main focus was getting in their face, making them rattle. Once the shot goes up, box out and clean up the boards."

Call it a job well done for Dominguez Hills.

The Golden Eagles, who made 23 of 55 shots (41.8%) were out-rebounded, 32-28, and managed only seven offensive rebounds.

Carlos Paul led Dominguez Hills with 15 points, while former Verbum Dei star Joe Bertrand added 12 rebounds to his conference-leading total. The Toros connected on 24 of 44 shots from the field (54.5%).

Aaron Lattimore had a game-high 20 points, including four three-point baskets, for Cal State L.A. teammates Rodney Harris and Lorenzo Ball scored 11 and 10 points each and Antoine Burwell had six assists.

The Toros broke a 16-16 tie on a Mike White three-point basket with 8:57 left in the first half and never trailed again. A layup by Del Hierro gave Dominguez Hills its first double-digit lead, 49-38, with 12:59 to play.

Cal State L.A. closed the gap to 53-48 on a breakaway steal by Rodney Harris with 9:59 left, but the Toros went on a 15-to-4 run over the next six minutes.

Records: Cal State L.A. 8-10, 3-1; Cal State Dominguez Hills 12-5, 3-2.

Community College Basketball

Southwest L.A. 76, East Los Angeles 69--East Los Angeles men's basketball Coach Jorge Calienes hasn't scouted many opponents this season. And don't expect Calienes to change his itinerary after the Huskies' latest defeat against Southwest L.A. in a Southern California Athletic Conference game Wednesday night at East L.A.

"We need to fix the repairs in our house and our problems before we can go out and scout," the sixth-year coach said. "There's no need to find out what other people are doing when you don't know what you are doing yourselves."

The Huskies do know they've faced some of the state's top community college teams.

Six of their losses have come against team's ranked among the top 15 in Southern California by the Junior College Athletic Bureau, including second-ranked Cerritos and third-ranked Long Beach City.

The Huskies trailed 66-56 with 7:26 to play, but used a 10-to-2 run to climb within 68-66 on a layup by sophomore guard Danny Barajas with 2:51 remaining.

Records: Southwest L.A. 15-4, 1-1; East L.A. 6-16, 1-1.

High School Girls' Basketball

San Gabriel 62, Bell Gardens 37--Maria Landeros scored 13 points for Bell Gardens, but the Lancers suffered their first Almont League defeat Tuesday at San Gabriel.

Records: Bell Gardens 9-6; San Gabriel 13-4.

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