It was not as artistic as a Shon Tarver jump shot, but the post-Tarver era at Santa Clara High kicked off Thursday with a 64-61 victory over Kennedy in the first round of the Simi Valley tournament at Simi Valley High.
Tarver, now a freshman at UCLA, led Santa Clara to consecutive Southern Section and state Division IV titles the past two seasons. But the Saints played much like their predecessors Thursday in holding off a late Kennedy rally and winning their 46th consecutive game.
Santa Clara (1-0) jumped to an 18-8 lead after one quarter on the strength of a pair of three-point baskets by Art Barron (16 points) and six Kennedy turnovers. The Saints took a 46-38 lead into the fourth quarter.
Joe Wyatt, who finished with a game-high 25 points--24 in the second half--made a layin and a three-point basket for Kennedy in the final six seconds to account for the final score.
In other first-round games:
Muir 86, Granada Hills 81--With his team trailing, 80-79, with 30 seconds left, Granada Hills’ Adrian Sellers missed the front end of a one and one and the Mustangs pulled away to the win.
Jerry Allen and Sagy Koren scored 25 and 18 points, respectively, and Sellers added 16 for Granada Hills.
Royal 88, Alemany 66--Royal opened a 28-4 lead in the first quarter and buried 10 three-point shots in the game.
David Tyner led the Highlanders (1-0) with 26 points, including three three-point baskets during Royal’s 28-12 run in the third quarter.
Richard Dice and Will Burr, each of whom contributed 16 points to pace Alemany (0-1), scored six points each in the second quarter to help the Indians trim their first-quarter deficit to 45-35 at the half.
Simi Valley 90, Sylmar 33--Simi Valley used an aggressive defense that forced 31 turnovers, and Sylmar hit only 11 of 40 field goals (28%), resulting in the biggest margin of victory in the tournament’s six-year history.
Sylmar (1-1) went without a field goal and committed nine turnovers during the final 6:21 of the first half and was outscored, 21-2.
Simi Valley outrebounded Sylmar, 56-20, 23 coming at the offensive end. Senior transfer Michael Crawford came off the bench to score a game-high 22 points, including three breakaway dunks, to lead the Pioneers.