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Hart hoops walks over West Ranch

Posted: January 31, 2014 10:27 p.m.
Updated: January 31, 2014 10:27 p.m.

Hart High guard Lewis Stallworth, left, dribbles the ball as West Ranch's Christian Ware-Berry defends on Friday at Hart High School.

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There’s one word that described what Hart Indians boys basketball was on Friday against the West Ranch Wildcats at Hart High — overwhelming.

The Indians pounded the two-time defending Foothill League champion Wildcats 83-43 in another sign of just how overwhelming Hart can be on a regular basis.

What would keep Hart (18-2 overall, 6-0 Foothill League) from winning a Foothill league title?

“I’m not answering that,” said Hart head coach Tom Kelly. “It’s irrelevant. That’s not a question I want to answer.”

He won’t have to if Hart keeps playing like this.

Lewis Stallworth led the Indians with 26 points (13 in each half), Myles Franklin scored 20 and Andrew MacArthur chipped in with 10.

“When you’re a two-time defending champ, you have a target on your back,” said West Ranch head coach Shant Bicakci. “Last two years people have wanted to come in and beat (us) pretty bad. They want to embarrass you. People in this league aren’t worried about who left or who came back. Hart had a sour taste in its mouth from last year from us winning league.”

Franklin would not admit that.

“It’s a lot of fun. That’s about it,” he said of beating West Ranch.

The Wildcats never found a defensive rhythm, as Hart was rarely stopped in transition.

The game was at its closest midway through the first quarter when Izayah Doyle made a layup to cut Hart’s lead to 12-7.

After that, Hart was off to the races — literally.

The Indians closed the first quarter on a 7-2 run that extended to an 18-2 run into the second quarter.

Hart went into halftime up 46-22.

The third quarter was much of the same.

Stallworth’s latest highlight happened midway through the third frame.

Chase White threw an alley-oop from the 3-point line, Stallworth curled around a defender, rose and caught the ball. He then threw it down for a slam dunk and a 54-25 lead.

West Ranch (10-12, 4-2) didn’t have much offense in the game,

The only consistent scoring came when point guard Ryan Beddeo attacked the paint.

He scored 19 points in the game, with 15 coming in quarters two and three.

“For any team, especially for us, to get in a defensive rhythm, we needed to score,” Bicakci said. “It impacted our defense.”

With the game firmly in hand, Hart’s starting five exited and the school’s popular BENCHKR3W made its appearance.

The blowout was a sight not many people expected, especially after the Indians squeaked by with a 73-68 win over the Wildcats on January 14.

“I learned we can’t take anyone lightly,” Franklin said he gathered from the first meeting.

Clearly Hart didn’t this time around.

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