With victories over La Canada and Pasadena Saturday, the Morningside High boys' basketball team advanced to today's semifinals of the 23rd L.A. Games.
It has been quite a week for the Monarch program. On Wednesday, Morningside alumnus Elden Campbell was drafted by the Lakers in the first round of the NBA draft. On Saturday, Monarch forward Stais Boseman made a game-winning shot at L.A. Jordan High that had his euphoric teammates telling him he was ready for the professional ranks.
In the fourth-round game against the Spartans, the score was tied, 42-42, when Boseman--who played varsity basketball as a freshman last season--grabbed a loose ball near midcourt with two seconds left. He barely controlled the ball as he tripped over his feet, falling toward the top of key.
From about 25 feet away, he shot--actually threw--the ball toward the basket as he fell to the ground with the buzzer sounding. The ball banked off the backboard and through the net.
"Tell me that's not NBA material," said one of his teammates.
"Just like Magic Johnson," said another teammate. " 'Money' had it all the way."
A smiling Boseman, who scored 18 points in the 45-42 victory, said he was just trying to get a shot off before the buzzer.
"I didn't try to do it like that," Boseman said. "I didn't even know exactly how much time was left.
"I just heard everyone yelling, 'Shoot it! Shoot it!' "
Twice in the second half, Boseman stripped ball-handlers at midcourt and drove for dunks. He said he felt those plays were as important as his last-second shot.
"I didn't they think could handle the ball very well, so I wanted to do something to try to give us a little spark," Boseman said. "I think (the steals and dunks) intimidated them."
His second steal-dunk combination play gave Morningside a 33-31 lead with 9:23 left. However, the taller La Canada team used inside scoring to take a 41-38 lead with 46 seconds remaining.
Nine seconds later, Boseman drove for a basket to cut the margin to a point, helping to set up his decisive shot. Morningside's victory set up a quarterfinal game with Pasadena a couple of hours later, also at Jordan.
Beforehand, the Morningside coaching staff told the team to be wary of the Bulldogs' quickness. But the Monarchs made quick work of the Bulldogs, 60-48, to cruise into the semifinals.
Senior forward Emil Moorehead (19 points) and Boseman (15) led the way in victory over Pasadena. The Monarchs will face Long Beach Jordan at noon today in El Camino College's north gym.
If victorious, they will take on either L.A. Fremont or Long Beach Poly at 3 p.m. in the title game, also at El Camino.
Carson was eliminated from the boys' basketball competition by Pasadena, 48-44, in a fourth-round game at L.A. Jordan.
The Colts had a chance to tie the game in the final minute, but they failed to execute a play designed by Coach Richard Masson during a timeout.
"Offensively, we played very poorly all game," Masson said. "We had an out-of-bounds play we wanted to run late in the game, but we never got into it because we didn't break for the ball correctly."
Junior swingman Derrick Smith led the Colts with 10 points. Senior forward Rudolph Washington had nine points--all in the second half--to lead a Carson comeback. The Colts had trailed by as many as nine points.
Pasadena guard Raymond Maberry had 20 points.
"(Maberry) was definitely the difference," Masson said. "Rudy, who is usually our top scorer, didn't shoot well, but their top guy shot the lights out."