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Coach Doug Mitchell proud of former Bishop Montgomery players during March Madness

Ethan Thompson smiles while standing with others on the sideline.
Oregon State’s Ethan Thompson, right, celebrates with Warith Alatishe after his dunk against Loyola Chicago in the Beavers’ Sweet 16 win in the NCAA tournament Saturday.
(Jamie Squire / Getty Images)

There’s a joke going around that it takes at least one Torrance Bishop Montgomery High player for a team to be successful in the NCAA basketball tournament.

Well, that means UCLA and Oregon State are the lucky teams. Four former Bishop Montgomery players are still around, and their coach from Bishop Montgomery, Doug Mitchell, is enjoying March Madness.

“It’s been exciting, a lot of fun watching those guys,” Mitchell said Monday.

Ethan Thompson has been the star for Oregon State, along with help from Gianni Hunt. Isaiah Johnson is also on the team. Then there’s David Singleton making key contributions for UCLA’s run.

“I think those guys have all played in big environments and big moments and hope that had something to do with it,” Mitchell said.

Three of the four were part of Bishop Montgomery’s magical 2017 team that went 31-2, won state and section titles and knocked off the likes of Chino Hills, Mater Dei and Sierra Canyon. They were there at the Galen Center for the Open Division semifinals, where Thompson, Singleton and Hunt helped the Knights take down Sierra Canyon and Marvin Bagley III.

Thompson and Singleton have been unflappable, a quality they displayed at Bishop Montgomery.

“They just go out and play and produce,” Mitchell said. “Nothing seems to bother Ethan — ever. The bigger the moment, the better he always seems to play, and David has a knack for making clutch shots throughout his career.”

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Mitchell wishes he could see Oregon State’s game for a berth in the Final Four on Monday night, but he’ll be taping it because he has basketball practice.

“I’m going to turn my phone off,” he said, “so nobody give me a spoiler alert.”


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