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ERIC SONDHEIMER / ON HIGH SCHOOLS

Los Angeles Loyola gets 55-53 buzzer-beater win against Torrey Pines

Justin Childress tips the ball in at the buzzer to give Loyola the victory in first round of Southern California Division I regionals. It will face Mater Dei, which beat Aliso Niguel, 66-46.

March 08, 2011|Eric Sondheimer

Los Angeles Loyola hasn't had a close basketball game in weeks, so the Southern Section Division 1A champion Cubs found themselves in a rare pressure-filled situation Tuesday night in a first-round game of the Southern California Division I regionals against Torrey Pines.

With the game tied, Jacob Hazzard launched a three-point shot that missed, but Justin Childress was able to tip the ball in at the buzzer to give Loyola a 55-53 victory at Loyola.

"It was an absolute battle," Coach Jamal Adams said. "It was a tough win."

Loyola (25-5), which won its 14th consecutive game, earned a quarterfinal game against Santa Ana Mater Dei on Thursday night at Mater Dei. Mater Dei defeated Aliso Niguel, 66-46. The game brings together two prestigious Catholic schools known for their big-time athletic programs. Loyola hasn't played Mater Dei in basketball since Adams' first season as coach six years ago, when the Cubs lost to the Taylor King-led Monarchs.

"We're excited," Adams said.

Top-seeded Long Beach Poly defeated Palisades, 77-46, and that win sets up a showdown with Etiwanda on Thursday, probably at Long Beach City College. Etiwanda defeated Bullard, 69-49, with Byron Wesley and Tyler LaCour scoring 18 points apiece. The two schools met in the 1AA semifinals and have played three times in the last two seasons, with every game going down to the wire.

Woodland Hills Taft, the City Section Division I champion, came out focused and intense and cruised to an 83-45 victory over Clovis West. Taft will host La Costa Canyon on Thursday.

Stephen Maxwell scored 17 points, Kevin Johnson 12 and Brandon Perry and Khiry Williams 10 apiece.

Coach Derrick Taylor had to do a little yelling at his players in the third quarter to get them motivated after leading, 40-27, at halftime, but the Toreadors responded with a surge, outscoring Clovis West, 22-5.

"I didn't want to yell, but I had to wake them up," Taylor said. "It's a grind. This thing is very difficult. We're trying to do it one game at a time."

Westchester and Corona Centennial will play Thursday. Westchester defeated Capistrano Valley, 61-44. Centennial defeated Redlands East Valley, 89-73.

In Division III, No. 2-seeded North Hollywood Harvard-Westlake struggled for three quarters before putting away Los Angeles Garfield, 74-58. The Wolverines led, 51-48, after three quarters. Zena Edosomwan scored 30 points and Damiene Cain 20 points for Harvard-Westlake. Julian Sandoval scored 26 points for Garfield.

"They're underdogs who played hard," Harvard-Westlake Coach Greg Hilliard said. "They were hitting threes all over the place."

City Division III champion Chatsworth upset Palm Springs, 74-66, with Derrick Hector scoring 30 points.

Encino Crespi set up a Thursday game against top-seeded La Canada by routing Fresno Hoover, 78-47. The Celts had four players score 11 points apiece.

eric.sondheimer@latimes.com

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