UCI nets 7-footer

Conor Clifford, a 7-foot center who averaged 15 points, 9.4 rebounds, 2.3 blocked shots and shot 67% from the field for Ocean View High, has signed a National Letter of Intent to play men's basketball for UC Irvine, Anteaters Coach Russell Turner announced on Tuesday.

"I'm really excited to add a true big man to our roster with the signing of Conor," Turner said of Clifford, who was named second-team All-CIF Southern Section Division 2AA after helping the Seahawks finish 24-4. "Conor is a tremendous player, student and person of incredible character. In the past two years, his improvement has been remarkable and I am excited about his future as an Anteater.

"Conor comes from one of the most highly-regarded high school programs in the area," Turner said. "He has benefited from great coaching along the way, including the legendary Jim Harris."

Clifford had 26 points and 13 rebounds in a 92-80 win over Mission Viejo at the Nike Extravaganza in February, and recorded 19 points and eight boards in a 69-51 playoff victory over Redondo Union.

He joins guard Alex Young of Phoenix, Ore., in the incoming freshman class for UCI. Young, the 2011 Oregon 4A Player of the Year and a first-team all-state selection the last two seasons, signed with the 'Eaters in November.

— From staff reports

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