Beach Bash: Four Takeaways

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Southern California

Posted On: 12/8/17 4:47 PM

We only needed two days at Corona del Mar High to come up with a few things to watch as the high school basketball season progresses.

The Beach Bash field featured teams from all different leagues, regions and levels of competition across Southern California and, after checking out eight games on Monday and Tuesday, these four storylines stuck out the most.

Four Takeaways

The Sunset League is up for grabs

For the first time in a long time, the Sunset League championship isn’t a realistic goal for only two teams. Over the last four years, that league has been dominated by Edison and Los Alamitos, but after seeing Marina, Huntington Beach, Fountain Valley and hearing about Newport Harbor’s 1-point victory over then No. 3 OC ranked Capistrano Valley, the Sailors are certainly dangerous. Marina’s youth is maturing, Huntington Beach is scrappy and Fountain Valley has some help coming once the transfer sit out period is over. Edison fell by three in overtime to a solid Trabuco Hills team in its first game at CdM and Los Al dropped all four of its games at the Jim Harris Classic, meaning this could be the year someone other than the Chargers or Griffins sneak in and steal the title.

The play of Edison’s Josh Phillips will be key for the Chargers to remain atop the Sunset League.

Corona del Mar looks to be just fine without Rodman

The host Sea Kings were in the news after its top player, and one of Orange County’s best prospects, junior D.J. Rodman bolted Corona del Mar and went south down the 73 toll road to Trinity League JSerra. The early returns for CdM after losing such a talent aren’t as bad as some expected. Senior guard Kevin Kobrine is flourishing as the No. 1 offensive option and he’s joined by grid-hooper John Humphreys, solid guards in Ben Coffman, Jack Stone and Jake Hamilton, and 6-foot-7 center Jack Garza, which will keep them competitive in the Pacific Coast League.

Santa Margarita could expose Mater Dei

In Tuesday’s game against Mira Costa, the Eagles starting lineup went as so: Ryan Evans (6-2), Jake Kyman (6-7), Max Agbonkpolo (6-8), Jordan Guest (6-8) and Nick Davidson (6-8). That massive lineup has the chance to expose the biggest weakness of this season’s Mater Dei team: Rebounding. The Monarchs got crushed on the boards by a much smaller Compton team last week at the Diablo Inferno, and if Santa Margarita can take advantage of the size differential, it could clip Mater Dei in Trinity League play for the first time since 2005.

Leuzinger has the pieces to make a deep playoff run in 3AA

What are the key ingredients to a deep playoff run at any level: Talent, experience, and defense. Leuzinger has all of that. Sophomore guard Amound Anderson is the unselfish, humble star who can put up huge scoring numbers. Tyler Ridley is the versatile and steady senior who can calm any storm. The Olympians mix in role players like John Clausell, Devon Brown, Bryan Mex, Loveday Chibueze and Damajay Washington, all of whom get after it on both ends of the floor.