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Santa Margarita sticks to plan, reaches tourney final
WESTMINSTER – Santa Margarita centered its offense around forward Joe Furstinger in a semifinal of the Charlie Wilkins Memorial Classic against Huntington Beach on Friday
On the defensive end, the Eagles focused on stopping Oilers' scoring standout, Harley Ruder.
The game plan worked on both ends of the court
Furstinger scored a game-high 32 points and the Eagles held Ruder to just six in a 65-49 victory at Westminster High. Furstinger also grabbed 10 rebounds.
Santa Margarita (9-2) takes on Foothill for the championship Saturday at 7:30 p.m.
"He's a talented young man," Santa Margarita coach Jeff Reinert said. "He can play inside and play outside ... we do a lot of things with him.
On slowing down Rudder, Reinert said, "We just wanted to take the ball out of his hands."
Andrew Tenbrink led Huntington Beach (5-3) with 17 points.
Santa Margarita's two losses have come against Canyon and Tustin, both top-10 teams
"I think we're playing pretty good," Reinert said. "We're getting a little better every game."
The victory was the second for the Eagles over the Oilers this season.
Santa Margarita defeated Huntington Beach, 70-27, on Nov. 27.
In the other semifinal:
No. 5 Foothill 74, Vista 48: Justin Davis scored 23, Jacob Dean scored 13 and Connor Stevens added 11 to lead the Knights (6-1) into the finals. Connor Stevens contributed 11.
The Knights led by nine at the half, 14 after the third and then blew the contest open with a 20-8 run in the fourth.
Foothill has won its three games in the tournament by margins of 45, 24 and 26.
The Knights' lone defeat came at the hands of No. 2 Mission Viejo, 88-62, on Dec. 1.