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Servite surprises No. 2 seed Sonora
ANAHEIM – An asteroid passed by Earth on Friday. It missed a great game.
Servite, the fifth-place team from the Trinity League, beat Freeway League champion and second-seeded Sonora, 44-40, in a CIF-Southern Section Division 3AAA second-round game in Servite's humid, noisy gym.
Servite (17-12) will play at Brea Olinda (21-7) in a 3AAA quarterfinal Tuesday. Brea won a home game against Murrieta Mesa of Murrieta on Friday.
Two of Orange County's more-spirited and better-organized student cheering sections made Sonora-Servite as much an event as a game. They watched quite a battle.
Servite had an 11-point lead, 40-29, late in the fourth quarter. Andrew Talley made a 3-pointer with 1:32 to go for Sonora's first basketball of the quarter. He soon made another 3-pointer to cut the Servite lead to four points. In the final 40 seconds, Servite's Neil Pauu made a free throw to make it 42-37, Sonora's Josh Rodriguez made his fourth 3-pointer make it 42-40 with 18 seconds to go, and the Friars' Trevor Treinen made a free throw with 16 seconds left to nudge the Servite lead to three.
Sonora's final shot of the game was one the Raiders wanted, as Jimmy Golden launched a 3-point try from the top of the key. He got off a good one, with a good view of the basket and a smooth release but the ball twisted out of the hoop. Servite's Travis Waller got the rebound, was fouled and, with two seconds remaining, made a free throw for a four-point lead that made victory secure.
Junior guard Louis Juego scored eight of Servite's 16 fourth-quarter points, and finished with 14. Friars sophomore Brandon Rice scored 11 points, nine in the first quarter, with eight rebounds
Waller, another Servite sophomore, guarded Golden and limited the Sonora senior to seven points on 2-for-13 shooting. Golden slowed in recent weeks by an ankle injury, went into the game averaging a team-leading 19 points a game.
Sophomore point guard Rodriguez led Sonora (24-4) with 12 points from his four 3-pointers.
Sonora shot 25 percent from the field, including a 1-for-10 struggle in the first quarter. Servite shot 43 percent.
"We were going to win this game with defense," Servite coach John Morris said. "We wanted to keep the score in the 40s, and we kept the pace the way we wanted it."
Servite scored the game's first points, and trailed only when Talley's basket at the end of the third quarter gave Sonora a 29-28 lead going into the fourth.
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