FINAL PEP TALK
Pacific Hills basketball Coach John Bobich has run out of pep talks to give his players.
Bobich has told his players that “this is the biggest game of the year” for the past eight games. And the pep talk has worked.
The Bruins (24-9), who barely qualified for the Southern Section playoffs as the fourth-place team in the Delphic League, will play Ripon Christian (34-1) Saturday in the State Division V championship game at the Oakland Coliseum. They qualified for their second state final appearance, beating Immanuel of Reedley, 74-51, in the Southern California Regional final Saturday at Cal State Dominguez Hills.
“It happened all so quickly,” Bobich said. “We struggled to make the playoffs and I told the players we need this game and they continue to step up. The whole team is in a zone.”
So now that the Bruins are in the state final, what is Bobich going to tell his players?
“I think the state finals are self-motivating,” he said. “I don’t think I have to say too much.”
One player who really has improved his game is 6-foot-4 forward Danny Brummel.
Brummel made an off-balance 10-foot bank shot at the buzzer to beat North Hollywood Campbell Hall, 44-42, in the Southern California Regional semifinals Thursday at Occidental College.
Brummel, who is averaging 21 points in the playoffs, scored a game-high 27 points against Reedley. He made 12 of 14 shots, including two three-point baskets, as the Bruins shot 77% from the field.
FRIAR ON THE RISE
Michael Smith is the top player for Providence, but his successor may be a 6-foot-9 forward from Santa Monica.
Austin Croshere, The Times’ 1992 Westside player of the year, has made important contributions as a reserve for Providence.
Keep an eye out for Croshere when the Friars (20-9) play Alabama (19-9) tonight in the NCAA Southeast Regional at Rupp Arena in Lexington, Ky.
On Friday, Croshere had 10 points and six rebounds in nine minutes to help the Friars beat Villanova in the Big East tournament quarterfinals at Madison Square Garden.
Smith was the Friars’ hero with 25 points and 12 rebounds, but Croshere played a key role off the bench.
In his college debut, Croshere had 23 points against Brown.
File this under “It pays to complain.”
In a Feb. 3 article, The Times Westside Section reported that Westchester quarterback Seka Edwards had not received a scholarship offer despite his impressive high school credentials.
Edwards, a two-time Times’ Westside offensive back of the year, passed for 2,053 yards and 28 touchdowns last season to help the Comets advance to the City Section 4-A Division semifinals. He passed for 3,599 yards and 52 touchdowns in the past two seasons.
In the article, it was reported that recruiters considered the 6-1, 170-pound Edwards too small to play college football.
According to Comet Coach Larry Wein, a Lehigh graduate saw the article and called the football coaches at his alma mater.
“Their quarterback had graduated and he knew his school was still looking for a replacement,” Wein said. “He called to tell the coaches that Edwards was available. That story started the whole process.”
Last week, Edwards accepted a scholarship to play football for Lehigh.
The St. Bernard girls’ basketball team will try to win its second consecutive State Division IV-A title Friday at the Oakland Coliseum. The Vikings will play Grass Valley Bear River in a rematch of last season’s title game, which they won, 59-48.
Olympia Scott had 25 points and 19 rebounds as the Vikings (28-5) beat Santa Ynez, 54-41, to win the Southern California Regional on Saturday at Cal State Dominguez Hills. The Vikings also beat Santa Ynez, 52-39, to win the Southern Section Division IV-AA championship.
“Even though we’re playing the same teams, each game gets tougher and tougher,” St. Bernard Coach Lori Pawinski said.
Scott, a 6-foot-2 senior who will attend Stanford in the fall, was one of two players from California selected to play in the third annual Kodak Girls’ High School All-America game, April 18, in Jackson, Tenn. The game features the top 20 high school players in the nation and will be televised by Prime Network and its affiliates.
Scott, The Times’ 1993 Westside player of the year, has averaged 17.7 points and 14.8 rebounds for the Vikings. In last season’s state final against Bear River, Scott had 24 points, 15 rebounds and five blocks.
“I think she’s one of the best players in the nation and she deserves this recognition,” Pawinski said.
Nicole Erickson of Brea-Olinda was the other California player selected to play in the game.
Timicha Kirby of Lynwood and Mimi McKinney of Peninsula were selected to the Kodak honorable mention team.
HALL OF FAMER
Charley Sands, West Los Angeles College’s first and only basketball coach, received a special 60th birthday present when he was inducted into the Community College Basketball Hall of Fame on March 10.
Sands was honored with San Diego Mesa Coach Jau Mulvehal and former players John Block (Glendale College, USC), Mack Calvin (Long Beach College, USC), Swen Nater (Cypress College, UCLA), and John Vallely (Orange Coast College, UCLA) during the first day of the state tournament at UC Irvine.
Sands, the Oiler coach since the school opened in 1968, has a record of 289-373. The Oilers, who had only one sophomore on the roster, were 6-21 and 0-10 in the Western State Conference this season.
The Oilers have played their home games off-campus for 25 years at locations throughout Los Angeles, principally Culver City Veterans Memorial Auditorium. West L.A., however, will move into its recently completed on-campus gymnasium in the fall.
“I wanted to coach at West Los Angeles College because of its location,” said Sands, who coached at Fairfax High before taking the Oiler job. “It struck me as a great opportunity. I certainly have no regrets. We have a built a program and had some fine players. I am particularly happy for helping to develop some kids who did not play in high school. Many of our guys went on to four-year colleges.”
Santa Monica College women’s track team went 9-0 during the Western State Conference dual and tri-meet season for the second consecutive season. The Corsairs are preparing for five weeks of invitationals.
Glory Dolphin, formerly of Santa Monica High, has been the team’s top performer. She competes in the hurdles, three jumping categories and the sprints. Her best marks include 18 feet, 1 1/2 inches in the long jump, 37-0 3/4 in the triple jump and 5-feet in the high jump. She also has run the 100-meter high hurdles in 15.44 seconds, fifth best in the Southern California.
Ruth Moeks, a heptathlete from Saarbrucken, Germany, is the team’s best shotputter (33-2 1/2), javelin thrower (102-1) and has the second-best time in the 100 high hurdles (16.04 seconds).
“Between the two of them, we get 50 points a meet,” Santa Monica assistant Richard Slotkin said.
Registration for an American Roundball Corp. basketball league for boys grades 7 through 12 is scheduled for 10 a.m. Sunday at the Beverly Hills family YMCA.
Players can join as part of a team or register individually. Everyone who signs up will be selected to a team. Information: (818) 995-3761.
Boys’ and girls’ soccer players are eligible to apply for $1,000 scholarships that will be awarded by the county Department of Recreation and Parks and Ford Motor Co.
Fifteen scholarships will be awarded during the spring. Criteria include diligence and commitment to soccer, financial need, grade-point average, soccer proficiency and community service.
The application deadline is March 25. Information: (818) 369-8693 or (818) 443-0017.