Seeded No. 9 in the City Section Division I tournament, Sylmar was forced to knock off Fremont, Palisades and finally Washington on Friday, 72-69, to advance to next Saturday’s 3 p.m. championship game at Cal State Dominguez Hills.
The Spartans (20-13) have turned around their season and are one win away from consecutive City titles. They won last year’s Division II title.
“We were terrible at the beginning of the year,” Coach Bort Escoto said. “They’ve played a lot better. They have a lot of heart.”
Adrian Galindo scored 26 points, including five three-pointers, to take down the Generals at Roybal. Tyler Hooks had 15 points. In his only basket of the game, Will Clark made a three-pointer with 2:30 left to give Sylmar a 62-60 lead.
“I decided to roll the dice and he came through,” Escoto said of Clark’s shot.
Washington (13-13) got terrific performances from Tramel Wilson, who made five three-pointers and finished with 22 points, and 6-8 junior Jared Chatham added 21 points. Jalen Gimore contributed 17 points.
Washington had the ball for a final shot, but Wilson’s three-point attempt hit the rim with four seconds left.
Sylmar will play Granada Hills in the final. The Spartans defeated Granada Hills, 82-67, on Dec. 13.