Bruce English made a 15-foot corner jump shot at the buzzer to lift second-seeded La Verne Lutheran to a 62-61 upset of top-seeded Windward in the Southern Section Division 5AA boys' basketball championship game Thursday night at Colony High.
Freshman Eric Cooper's jumper pulled the Trojans to within a point with 31 seconds remaining. Windward guard Jordan Wilson was fouled but missed the first free throw in a one-and-one situation. C.J. Cooper drove to the basket and was fouled, making both free throws to give Lutheran (23-8) a 60-59 lead with 24.4 seconds left.
Wesley Saunders made a driving layup to give the Wildcats (23-8) a 61-60 lead with 7.2 seconds left, setting the stage for English's last-second heroics. Lutheran won its second section title in three years and avenged a 10-point loss in last year's final.
"Revenge is sweet," English said after watching his game-winner hit the rim, bounce into the air and drop through the net. "Our orders were to get to the rim. I just happened to be open and that's my shot. It was a little faith and a little luck."
C.J. Cooper had 17 points, English had 15 and Grant Jerrett added 14 for the Trojans, who overcame a 51-44 deficit after three quarters.
Saunders had 20 points and Kwame Firempong added 15 for Windward.
In earlier games at Colony:
Ribet Academy 71, Tarbut V' Torah 59: Senior Jon Conley showed why he is Ribet Academy's all-time leading scorer, finishing with 33 points, 26 rebounds, four assists, two blocks and two steals to lead the top-seeded Fighting Frogs to a 71-59 victory in the boys' Division 6AA championship game.
Greg Sequele had 14 points and Larry Carter III added 12 points for Ribet Academy (20-11), which trailed 47-41 after three quarters.
Bradley Neutel led the No. 2-seeded Lions (23-4) with 20 points and seven rebounds.
St. Bernard 53, Granada Hills Hillcrest Christian 31: Angelica Laury had 21 points and Gabrielle Adoh added 13 as the top-seeded Vikings outscored the third-seeded Eagles 35-11 in the second half to win the girls' Division 6AA championship game.
St. Bernard (20-13) made four of 39 field goals and 10 of 19 free throws in the first half but opened the third quarter on a 17-0 run.
Paris Wagner scored seven points for the Eagles (17-9), who shot three-for-28 from the floor in the final two quarters.
— Steve Galluzzo
City Section boys
LACES 58, Los Angeles View Park Prep 56: John Moore scored 17 points and Leonard Pineda 15, and LACES (13-18) held on to win the City Section small schools' boys' championship game at Roybal. View Park (15-17) couldn't covert in the final seconds. Josh Jacobs had 14 points and Joe Fiddmont 13 for View Park.
— Eric Sondheimer
Southern Section girls
Long Beach St. Anthony 57, Van Nuys Montclair Prep 47: Junior forward Jourdan Cooper scored 12 points to lift top-seeded St. Anthony to the Division 5A title at Santa Ana Mater Dei. It is the Saints' first championship since they won a 5AA title in 2000. Montclair Prep got 18 points from Kimberly Scamman and 12 from Chantel Dooley.
Santa Margarita 52, Pasadena Muir 39: Senior guard Melissa Zornig scored 19 points and Elise Lorenz added 14 to lift Santa Margarita to the Division 3A title at Santa Ana Mater Dei. It is the Eagles' first championship since they won a 3AA title in 2005. Muir got 10 points from Jermani Daniels and eight apiece from Taylor Gomez and Ashia Owens.
Santa Monica 69, Fontana Summit 63: Moriah Faulk scored 19 points, Thea Lemberger had 16 and Kristina Johnson added 14 to lift second-seeded Santa Monica to the Division 1A title at Santa Ana Mater Dei. It is the Vikings' first championship in school history. Summit got a game-high 23 points from Ashley Weissman.
— Melissa Rohlin
City Section girls
LACES 55, Los Angeles View Park Prep 39: An 18-0 run to start the fourth quarter broke a 37-37 tie and lifted LACES (29-5) to its first City Section small schools girls' championship. Ea Shoushtari scored 16 points and had 13 rebounds.
— Eric Sondheimer