Westchester Does It Again

From Staff Reports

Trevor Ariza's slam dunk on a backdoor play with 14 seconds left sent Westchester High to the state Division I boys' basketball championship game for a second consecutive season.

Ariza scored on a perfect pass from Scott Cutley and Westchester defeated Los Angeles Fairfax, 43-41, in the Southern California Regional championship game Saturday at Long Beach Arena.

Kevin Bell's long three-point shot fell short at the buzzer for Fairfax, which tied the game with 48 seconds left on an interior shot by Jamal Boykin.

The Comets (31-3) will have a rematch against Oakland Tech in the state championship game at 8 p.m. Saturday at Arco Arena in Sacramento.

Ariza, a 6-foot-7 senior forward, finished with 16 points and guard Bobby Brown had 12 for Westchester. Josh Shipp scored 11 points for Fairfax (28-4), which lost for the third time in four games this season against Westchester.

"It's tough to beat any team three or four times, let alone a very good team," Westchester Coach Ed Azzam said. "Right now, I'm relieved."

-- Mike Bresnahan

North Hollywood Harvard-Westlake 80, Lakewood Artesia 62 -- The Wolverines combined their customary opportunistic defense, strong offensive rebounding and senior guard Ed White's hot hand for a decisive third-quarter run to win the Division III final at Long Beach.

Harvard-Westlake scored 33 points off 23 Artesia turnovers, had 16 second-chance points to the Pioneers' four and White scored 11 points, making all three of his three-point shots, during a 13-0 run over a 1:28 span that gave the Wolverines a 60-42 lead.

Second-seeded Harvard-Westlake (29-6) led by at least 11 for the remainder of the game, winning its 11th consecutive game and qualifying for the state finals for the first time since 1997. The Wolverines will play Sacramento Foothill (32-2) at 2:45 p.m. Saturday at Arco Arena.

White scored 23, 18 in the second half, senior forward Harris Chung and junior center Evan Harris had 13 each and junior forward Bryce Taylor added 12, all in the first half, for the Wolverines.

Senior Kejuan Johnson had 19 points, junior John Ricks added 14 off the bench and senior Jibri Taylor had 12 for top-seeded Artesia (30-3), which had won 21 in a row.

Harvard-Westlake led in rebounds, 42-30, including an 18-9 edge on the offensive boards. Harris pulled down a game-high 13.

-- Steven Herbert

Los Angeles Price 61, Reedley Immanuel 41 -- The Knights won the Division V regional championship at Cal State Fullerton, their fourth consecutive and the third in a row against Immanuel.

Price pulled away in the second quarter, outscoring the Eagles, 16-6, to take a 33-18 halftime lead.

Immanuel's Jacob Wild scored 11 of his game-high 17 points in the third quarter to keep the Eagles within striking distance. But Wild, who had 16 rebounds, was called for his fourth foul early in the fourth quarter and seconds later was disqualified after receiving a technical.

On its next possession, Immanuel (28-4) pulled within 10 on a three-point basket by Jason Orlopp, the only long-range basket in 14 attempts by the Eagles, but Price (32-2) followed with a 9-0 run to put the game away.

"The young guys did exactly the game plan," Price Coach Michael Lynch said. "[Immanuel] had the size advantage, so we wanted to use our quickness, stretch the floor a little, and it worked."

Darren Morrison scored 15 points to lead the Knights, who will try to become the first boys' team to win four consecutive state titles when it plays Modesto Christian (25-8) in the championship game at 4 p.m. Friday at Arco Arena.

Lynch said the team's leading scorer, Derrick Williams, who has been out since injuring his knee in Price's final regular-season game, will visit a doctor early this week in hopes of getting clearance for the state championship game.

Dan Arritt

For The Record Los Angeles Times Thursday March 20, 2003 Home Edition Main News Part A Page 2 National Desk 0 inches; 25 words Type of Material: Correction High school basketball -- A Sports article on Sunday identified guard Ed White of North Hollywood Harvard-Westlake High as a senior. He is a sophomore.
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