View Mobile Site

Ask the Expert

Signal Photos


Poor shooting dooms Hart in playoffs

Posted: February 28, 2014 11:17 p.m.
Updated: February 28, 2014 11:17 p.m.

SANTA ANA — From the first shot Hart High put up Friday night at Foothill High School in the CIF-Southern Section Division IIA quarterfinals, something was off.

And almost everything stayed off after.

The Indians lost 55-42 to the host Tustin Tillers in a game where Hart couldn’t make baskets and was swallowed inside by a determined zone defense.

“They played a good zone, but our shots wouldn’t fall,” said Hart senior guard Lewis Stallworth. “We gave it our best. Sometimes your best isn’t good enough.”

It wasn’t that Tustin (22-7) was the more talented team, but it was better at stopping Hart’s usual rapid-fire offense than any other team this season.

The Indians made just 13-of-53 shots in the game and were uncharacteristically one-dimensional.

Hart (26-3) took 36 three-point attempts and made just six.

“We had to control their transition game,” said Tillers point guard T.J. Shorts, who gave Hart fits early in the game. “They didn’t want to come inside. They were a three-point shooting team.”

Hart’s four main offensive players all struggled. Or as those at the game will verify, the rim was certainly unkind with numerous baskets popping in and out.

Stallworth scored 12 points, but was 5-of-20 from the field.

Myles Franklin scored 11 points on 2-of-7 shooting, all three-point tries.

Davis Koppenhaver was 4-of-12 for 11 points.

And Frank Lonsinger was 0-for-6, all three-point tries.

“Bottom line is we didn’t make the shots,” said Hart head coach Tom Kelly.

Hart trailed 12-5 after one quarter and 23-13 at halftime. The Indians were behind 32-26 after there quarters.

Hart scored 30 points in the first quarter against Kaiser in Tuesday’s second-round win.

Tustin was getting just enough offense, created by Shorts and good shooting.

The Tillers made 18-of-37 shots in the game and were paced by Shorts and forward George Wilson with 13 points apiece.

Hart got within five points with 4:30 to play in the game when Franklin’s free throws cut Tustin’s lead to 36-31.

However, the Tillers scored the game’s next nine points.

Tustin made 13-of-14 free throws in the fourth quarter.

Kelly has said this Hart team was the most talented in his 13 years at the helm of Indians basketball.

At the lower levels, the freshman and JV teams each went 10-0 this year.

But Franklin will be the only one of the previously mentioned four Indians returning next season.

Kelly said this to the kids after: “I’m sorry we didn’t get you to game five.”

Game five would have been the division championship game.


Commenting not available.
Commenting is not available.


Powered By
Morris Technology
Please wait ...