Dominguez High School Saturday witnessed what opponents of Glendora High have seen all season: the Tracy Murray Show, as the Tartans defeated the Dons, 61-57, in the Southern California Regional Division II final at the Sports Arena.
After a shaky start, Murray provided a great ending, by scoring 19 fourth-quarter points and finishing with 37, as the Tartans earned a spot in Saturday’s State championship game at the Oakland Coliseum.
Murray, the career and single-season state scoring leader, also controlled the boards in the fourth quarter, grabbing 10 of his game-high 12 rebounds.
“We have a team of great character,” said Glendora Coach Mike LeDuc. “It is a situation where you have the best player around, surrounded by a group of good players.”
Dominguez, the Southern Section 4-A Division champions, held Murray to only 18 points after three quarters. He scored only three points in the third quarter, as the Dons led, 47-40.
J. J. O’Laughlin played a major role in keeping the Tartans from getting routed in the third quarter, scoring on three acrobatic layups to keep Glendora within 10 points.
Murray may have had problems early on, but he showed a preview of things to come with a three-point jumper with eight seconds remaining in the third quarter to bring Glendora to within seven points.
“I had lost my confidence a little when I was missing,” said Murray, who has not decided where he will attend college. of The choices, he said, are between UCLA, Louisville, Villanova, UNLV and New Mexico.
“When I hit that shot (at the end of the third quarter), I said to myself ‘I can finally hit a shot now,’ ” said Murray, who averaged 45.5 points per game this season.
Dominguez did not fold at the start of the fourth quarter, stretching its lead to 51-40, on an explosive, one-hand dunk by 6-foot-4 guard Xavier Edison.
After that, it was all Murray.
Dominguez Coach Russell Otis credited Murray for Glendora’s success, but also praised Murray’s teammates.
“Tracy Murray is a good player,” said Otis, whose Dons finish at 26-5. “But, Glendora is just not Tracy Murray, they are a good basketball team.”