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Golden Valley: Alone on top

Grizzlies go from worst to first

Posted: February 13, 2009 2:16 a.m.
Updated: February 13, 2009 4:57 a.m.

Golden Valley's Trevor Wiseman, left, drives around West Ranch's Hakeem Bradley Thursday at West Ranch High. Wiseman had 31 points.

In one year, Golden Valley has gone from winless to peerless.

The Grizzlies outscored West Ranch 30-7 in the third quarter and emphatically wrapped up an outright Foothill League title with an 84-66 victory Thursday evening at West Ranch High School.

It was a very different scene a year ago, when West Ranch defeated Golden Valley by the same score and saddled the Grizzlies with an 0-10 record in league play.

On Thursday, Golden Valley's Trevor Wiseman shot a white-hot 71 percent and scored 31 points to help complete the turnaround.

"I was just thinking about last year, how embarrassed I felt," Wiseman said. "What I felt last year was horrible. This year, I felt good during all that."

The Grizzlies (24-3, 9-1) held West Ranch scoreless for the first three and a half minutes of the third quarter.

At the other end, Golden Valley rained 3-pointers, served up alley-oops and led by as many as 31 to bury the Wildcats.

"We told them at halftime that the difference was going to be which team played with the most poise and the most patience under pressure," said Golden Valley head coach Chris Printz. "I cannot tell you how proud I am of not just what they accomplished, but to do it that way."

West Ranch (15-11, 4-6) rode the emotion of its senior night to a one-point lead after the first quarter.

Alejandro Castro, David Franklin and Will Tate were able to consistently get into the lane, but the Wildcats struggled to get points in the half-court game.

"We made a couple of defensive adjustments at halftime," Printz said. "In the second half, we did an outstanding job defensively. We put ourselves in a position to make that run by doing what we did in the first half."

Golden Valley also threw a couple of different looks at West Ranch on offense, including posting up guard Steven Thornton, who scored the first seven points of the third and 15 total in the frame.

Maverick Ahanmisi helped the Grizzlies weather West Ranch's early barrage by hitting four of his six 3-pointers in the first half. Wiseman also attacked the glass and created numerous second chances.

"This year, it was payback time," Wiseman said. "We came back and played our hearts out."

Before the game, the Wildcats honored 11 seniors, including Kevin Sutton and Beau Martin, who combined to score 24 points.

Ahanmisi scored 20 points for Golden Valley and Thornton added 19.

But all the Grizzlies did the program proud.

"I'm going to call every senior that's graduated in the last couple years and thank them also," Printz said. "What we did tonight is a lot of what they did when we had no attention. This is their championship, too."


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