MOST OUTSTANDING PLAYER: Melo Ball (6-2, Sophomore, Chino Hills)
The flamboyant and gifted 15 year-old scored 33 points (11 of 23 from the field including nine 3s) to go with 15 assists, three steals and only two turnovers as the Huskies improved to 23-0 with the 106-80 win over Wasatch Academy and extended their two-year winning streak to 58 – just eight short of the California record.
FIRST TEAM: Elijah Duplechan (6-0, Senior, Sheldon)
Duplechan was superb in the second half, especially down the stretch, to help Northern California’s top-ranked team rally for a 64-63 victory over Orange Lutheran. He scored 16 of his 22 points in the second half, including the go-ahead bucket on a drive with 15 seconds to go.
FIRST TEAM: Kaden Rasheed (6-0, Senior, Santa Margarita)
The Eagles trailed by 12 points in the first half but Rasheed helped propel the nifty comeback, hitting two free throws with 10 seconds to go that rendered a just-inside-the-arc jumper by Corona Centennial’s Gio Nelson at the buzzer moot as the Eagles held on, 53-52, for a win that will help their seeding in the CIF Southern Section Open Division playoff bracket. The Huskies are also headed to the Open Division (for the fourth year in a row).
FIRST TEAM: Earnie Sears III (6-5, Senior, Alemany)
The Warriors are also shaping up as a very high seed in the Southern Section Open playoffs, adding to their impressive resume with an 85-65 win over Santa Monica. Sears, a 7-foot high jumper and one of the most improved players in Southern California, scored 25 points while hitting 10 of 12 shots from the field, including three 3s. He also had six rebounds and two blocked shots.
FIRST TEAM: Eli Scott (6-5, Senior, Chino Hills)
The Loyola Marymount-bound Scott has been a starter for a program that has won 58 games in a row over two years but remains one of the most underrated players anywhere. He scored 26 points (11 of 12 from the field) with 12 rebounds, four assists and three blocked shots.
FIRST TEAM: Ethan Thompson (6-5, Senior, Bishop Montgomery)
The Oregon State-bound Thompson propelled his team to a much more one-sided than expected victory over Fairfax (79-55) with 26 points, six rebounds and six assists. He’s a top candidate for California Player of the Year.