Simi Valley Looks Convincing, Even in Slow Motion

Times Staff Writer

Go ahead and make your argument for a shot clock at the high school level and when you march into the Southern Section office, be sure to have the film of this one tucked under your arm.

Oh, and tell those folks the projector really is playing the film at full speed.

Simi Valley finally was able to shake loose from Royal's delay tactics in the fourth quarter for a 62-37 Marmonte League victory Friday at Simi Valley High. The Pioneers, however, scored 25 points in the fourth quarter after leading by only seven after three.

"I think it's pretty sad," Simi Valley guard Butch Hawking said. "They didn't even look to score. But they did a pretty good job of it, I have to admit."

Simi Valley (12-3, 3-0), ranked No. 1 in the Southern Section, scored more than 100 points in each of its first two league games. Its average margin of victory in those games was 38 points.

First-year Royal Coach Joe Malkinson, aware of the Pioneers' penchant for stomping league foes, deployed the delay from the start. He didn't depart from the strategy until Simi Valley took a 15-point lead with 4:30 left.

When asked what cynics would say about his attempt to slow the Pioneers to a crawl, Malkinson said, "Tell them, 'How do I guard somebody 6-feet-10 when we don't have anybody over 6-4?' Tell them to come tell me and I'll do it."

The 6-10 somebody on Malkinson's mind was Don MacLean, Simi Valley's All-American center. MacLean finished with 25 points, 14 in the fourth quarter. Forward Shawn DeLaittre scored 22 points.

MacLean was also cynic No. 1. Said MacLean: "That's not our game. We like to score points and run it up on them. They ended up losing by 25, so they look stupid."

A few more games like this and Simi Valley Coach Bob Hawking may start lobbying for run-and-gun basketball.

"It's a good commentary on why we need a clock in high school basketball. These fans didn't pay money to come in and watch them hold the ball," Hawking said of the 2,600 in attendance. About 250 more were left standing outside the gym.

Royal (8-6, 1-2) scored only seven points in the fourth quarter, making only 2 of 8 field-goal attempts. The Highlanders were 9 of 16 in the first three quarters, choosing shots more carefully than some shoppers pick tomatoes.

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