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Fryer on basketball: Eagles should get boost
A look at Orange County basketball ...
•Santa Margarita is 6-2 after its loss to Tustin on Saturday in the championship game of the Beach Bash Tournament at Corona del Mar. The Eagles will get better when 6-foot junior point guard Devonte Klines is eligible toward the end of the month, after the expiration of the 30-days sit-out period he had to observe after transferring from Valley View of Moreno Valley. Klines averaged 13 points last season for Valley View.
•While Trinity League rivals Mater Dei and JSerra were playing in the Tournament of Champions championship game, another Trinity team, St. John Bosco of Bellflower, was beating View Park of Los Angeles, 89-55, in the championship game of the El Rancho Blue Pride Classic. Bosco is 5-0.
•Fountain Valley is off to a 9-1 start. The Barons defeated Santa Clara of Oxnard, 69-67, in the championship game of the Valley Christian Tournament at Valley Christian of Cerritos. The only loss for Fountain Valley, which does not play again until Dec. 18 at Segerstrom, was to El Toro by five points.
•The departure of Tom McCluskey as coach at Trabuco Hills looks permanent. McCluskey resigned as coach last week when he and the school administration had differing interpretations of an email sent to basketball player parents about their financial obligations. An attempt to reach a compromise by which McCluskey would resume coaching was unsuccessful Monday.
•Corona del Mar lost to Tustin, 50-48, Friday in a Beach Bash Tournament game, but Sea Kings coach Ryan Schachter was encouraged by many things, including his team's depth. "We have 10 legitimate basketball players," Schachter said. "That includes a couple of football guys who are just starting to contribute, coming off of playing on our CIF championship football team."
•Tustin 6-6 senior Nick Hornsby, who signed with Sacramento State, scored 13 points with eight rebounds Saturday in the Tillers' Beach Bash championship game victory over Santa Margarita after scoring 18 with seven rebounds against Corona del Mar the day before. "He's a very talented offensive player," said Tustin coach Ringo Bossenmeyer of Hornsby. "We're trying to make sure he understands that he needs to stay committed defensively, because when he gets to the college level he is going to have to guard some very good players."
•Jalen Hall of Cypress had a pair of big games last week. He scored 30 points against Mira Costa of Manhattan Beach, and followed with 21 against Savanna. Hall is a 6-foot senior guard who was All-Empire League first team last season.
•The North Orange County Championships is a 24-team tournament that began Monday and concludes Saturday with the championship game at Sonora at 7:30 p.m. Among the Orange County teams in it are No. 7-ranked Canyon; Servite, which beat No. 9 El Toro last week; Troy, which was 7-1 going into this week; Aliso Niguel (5-1); and Sonora (4-1).
•The Irvine World News/Gary Raya Classic started Monday and concludes Saturday with the championship game at Concordia University. Among the county teams in that tournament are county No. 2 Mission Viejo; No. 6 Tustin; and El Toro and Tesoro, tied at No. 9 in the county rankings this week.
•The CIF-Southern Section did not release its boys basketball polls Monday, when it was scheduled to do so, because two of the section's 12 boys basketball divisions did not report their poll results, according to CIF-SS spokesman Thom Simmons. Look for those to be published at ocvarsity.com within the next couple of days.
•The JCTees.com Orange County North-South Challenge is next week, Dec. 21 and 22, at El Toro High. There are four games on Dec. 21, including Capistrano Valley vs. Brethren Christian and its 7-foot-5 center Mamadou Ndiaye at 5 p.m. and Tesoro vs. Ocean View at 8 p.m. The seven games on Dec. 22 includes Mission Viejo vs. Canyon at 8 p.m.
•Tickets at $12-$22 are available for the Nike Extravaganza on Feb. 1 and 2 at Mater Dei, with purchasing information available at materdei.org. The Feb. 1 boys games include Brethren Christian vs. Servite, and Saddleback Valley Christian, a rising small-schools program coached by former Mater Dei and USC star Tom Lewis, vs. Santa Margarita. The Feb. 2 schedule includes JSerra vs. Fairfax of Los Angeles, Foothill vs. De La Salle of Concord; state No. 1 Long Beach Poly vs. state No. 5 St. John Bosco; and Mater Dei vs. Westchester of Los Angeles.