It was a glorious season for Jordan High School of North Long Beach, which won its first CIF basketball title (I-AA). And now the Panthers have placed two players on The Times' 1991 South Coast Prep Boys All-Star Basketball Team, and their coach, Ron Massey, has been named Coach of the Year.
"Our mission was to prove wrong the people who said you couldn't win with football players coming to your team so late," said Massey, 42, Jordan's coach since 1981.
Massey guided the Panthers to a 24-7 record, overcoming a slow start caused by the late-November arrival of four players who were on the football team.
The Player of the Year in the South Coast is Brandon Titus, a junior guard at Gahr who averaged 26 points a game and was the most valuable player in the San Gabriel Valley League.
Titus made the all-star team for the second consecutive season. Other repeaters were Jordan's Darryl Bryant, Pat Thacker of Millikan and Mark Flick of Cerritos.
The South Coast team:
Brandon Titus, Gahr--"His shooting is definitely Division I (quality)," Gahr Coach Vern Stewart said of Titus, a 6-foot-4, left-handed junior who averaged 26.2 points, five rebounds and 2.5 assists. His desire and work habits, Stewart said, are as impressive as his statistics.
Rodney Harris, Jordan--A defensive specialist, Harris is a leader on and off the court, Massey said. An all-Moore League pick, the 6-1 senior averaged 12.4 points and four assists for the I-AA champions.
Darryl Bryant, Jordan--The Panthers' most consistent player, the 6-3 Bryant averaged 12.5 points and five rebounds, and shot 56% from the field.
Mark Flick, Cerritos--The mobile 6-8 Flick, who can play inside or outside, is headed for UC Santa Barbara. He averaged 21.8 points and nine rebounds this season and was an all-San Gabriel Valley League selection.
Pat Thacker, Millikan--The 6-6 Thacker, who is expected to play at Cal State Fullerton, averaged 17.5 points, 6.5 rebounds, 3.8 assists and 2.2 steals. "He made an overall contribution," Millikan Coach Bill Odell said.
Jamie Davis, Millikan--"He was our Mr. Clutch," Odell said of this 6-4 inside-outside player who had a knack of hitting game-winning shots. Davis averaged 15.5 points, eight rebounds and 3.5 assists, and led the Rams in blocked shots.
Tyus Edney, Poly--"He is undoubtedly the best pure point guard at Poly in my (13-year) tenure," said Poly Coach Ron Palmer of the 5-11 Edney, who was the Moore League's most valuable player. Edney, who is headed for UCLA, averaged 18.5 points and six assists this season.
Fabian Nixon, Poly--A 6-3 junior, Nixon averaged 13 points, 5 rebounds and 3 assists. "He may end up being the best player I have ever coached," Palmer said. Nixon plays best against tough competition.
Mike Fields, Lakewood--Fields is strong and can play above the rim, though he is only 6 feet tall. He averaged 17 points and five rebounds, and excelled on defense.
Chris Morrison, St. Anthony--A 6-4 senior with a quick first step and great leaping ability, Morrison averaged 17 points, seven rebounds and three assists. He also shot 80% from the free-throw line and made the all-Camino Real League team.
Mike Coil of The Times also contributed to this story.
Los Angeles Times 1991 PREP BASKETBALL ALL-STARS THE KINGS OF THE COURT: NAME: Brandon Titus SCHOOL: Gahr YEAR: Jr. HEIGHT: 6-4 AVERAGE: 26.2 NAME: Mark Flick SCHOOL: Cerritos YEAR: Sr. HEIGHT: 6-8 AVERAGE: 21.8 NAME:Pat Thacker SCHOOL: Millikan YEAR: Sr. HEIGHT: 6-6 AVERAGE: 17.5pts NAME: Jamie Davis SCHOOL: Millikan YEAR: Sr. HEIGHT: 6-4 AVERAGE: 15.5 NAME: Tyus Edney SCHOOL: Poly YEAR: Sr. HEIGHT: 5-11 AVERAGE: 18.5 NAME: Fabian Nixon SCHOOL: Poly YEAR: Jr. HEIGHT: 6-3 AVERAGE: 13.0 NAME: Rodney Harris SCHOOL: Jordan YEAR: Sr. HEIGHT: 6-1 AVERAGE: 12.4 NAME: Darryl Bryant SCHOOL: Jordan YEAR: Sr. HEIGHT: 6-3 AVERAGE: 12.5 NAME: Mike Fields SCHOOL: Lakewood YEAR: Sr. HEIGHT: 6-0 AVERAGE: 17.0 NAME: Chris Morrison SCHOOL: St. Anthony YEAR: Sr. HEIGHT: 6-4 AVERAGE: 17.1 Player of the Year: Brandon Titus Gahr Coach of the Year: Ron Massey Jordan 24-7