Tenacious Cypress wins Holiday Classic final


SANTA ANA – The Cypress Centurions had an answer for every question Glendora threw at them in the championship game of the Elks Holiday Classic on Friday night.

The seventh-ranked Centurions (14-1) passed the test with a 63-45 victory over the Tartans (11-4) at Century High.

"That is kind of our team," Cypress coach Jeff Russell said. "I've been saying it all year we're kind of like bulldogs. We keep fighting and they don't give in.

"When a team makes a run, they feel really confident that they're going to be able to match that run."

The fourth quarter was a great illustration of that point. Glendora started to climb its way back into the game, shaving five points off of Cypress' 17-point lead, making the score 52-40.

However, before Glendora could really make an impact, the Centurions responded with 7-2 run, putting the game away. Jake Brito capped the run with a 3 from the corner. He finished with nine points.

"Coming into this game, we knew Glendora was a tremendous team and we knew that it was going to take a great effort," Russell said. "We came out with the thought of we have to have an effort every time. They're going to make shots and they're going to make runs, but it is how we react to those runs and shots that were going to make the difference.

It also helped to have Jimmy Jackson leading the way. The senior led the Centurions with 26 points and six 3-point field goals. A.J. Adams had 18 and four 3-point field goals.

Jackson was selected most outstanding player of the tournament.

Jackson scored 18 of 26 points in first half. Adams scored 10 of his 18 in the second half.

Early in the game, Glendora rallied from a 21-13 deficit to make the score 23-20. On the final possession of the quarter, Jackson got free and knocked home a 3-point field goal.

He had another buzzer beater at the end of the third quarter, giving Cypress a 45-28 lead.

In the third-place game

Paramount 64, Valencia 56 OT: The Pirates (9-4) went on an 8-0 run in overtime on their way to the victory over the Tigers (6-8).

Sean Steinke led Valencia with 28 points. Gabe Perez added 13 points for the Tigers.

Perez tied the game at 46-46 late in regulation as the Tigers rallied from a five-point deficit to force overtime.

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