Valencia's Alex Schindler, left, battles for the ball with Villa Park center Lamont Tyler in the first period ofFriday night's first round CIF Southern Section playoff game.
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Villa Park starts slow, finishes with flourish


VILLA PARK – Villa Park boys basketball coach Kevin Reynolds was upset with his team at halftime of its game Friday night against Valencia.

His team had come out flat and not ready to play.

"Valencia really brought it to us in that first quarter," Reynolds said.

Junior guard Luke Selway made sure the second half was a different story.

Selway scored 22 points, had 10 rebounds and five steals as the Spartans beat Valencia, 53-44, in a CIF-SS Division 2-AA first-round victory at Villa Park High.


OCVarsity Hot Shots 2: Friday's basketball games


The Century League champion Spartans (20-6) were up only two points at the half as guard Zavon Benford and his teammates got off to a hot start for the Tigers (9-19).

Benford, a senior, had 10 points in the half, including two 3-pointers. He finished with 17 points.

The Tigers were up three points late in the half, but Selway went on a 5-0 run by himself.

"Whenever we need a bucket, Luke is getting the ball and making a play for us," Reynolds said.

The Spartans pushed their lead to 11 in the third quarter as Selway kept scoring, but Casey Hershfield and Kevin Olsen got in the act as well by scoring on layups.

The Tigers were able to get back into the game late in the quarter with 3-pointers from Brenden Edwards and Eric Schuster, and they were down 38-34 going into the fourth.

Benford opened the final quarter with a 3-pointer, making it a one-point game, but Selway scored on the next possession and shortly after that Olsen made his first 3-pointer of the game.

"We are a young team, but this is the playoffs now," Reynolds said. "We need to do a better job of coming out like they were tonight.

"Just because we are a seeded team doesn't mean anything will be given to us."

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