The right di­rec­tion

Boys hoops: Hart nearly pulls off win against Bishop Ale­many

The Signal - - Sports - By Dan Lovi Sig­nal Staff Writer

The Hart boys bas­ket­ball team took a step in the right di­rec­tion on Fri­day night, fac­ing Ale­many on the road in its third game of The War­rior Clas­sic.

While the end re­sult wasn’t in the In­di­ans fa­vor, as they lost 79-74 to the War­riors, Hart head coach Tom Kelly was pleased with the en­ergy and pas­sion his team dis­played.

Hart (1-7) was tena­cious on de­fense and ag­gres­sive on of­fense, keep­ing up against a much big­ger Ale­many (6-5) team.

“I’m proud of the ef­fort. We bat­tled. We led for damn near 30 min­utes of the game,” Kelly said. “Our kids played so hard. One or two box outs

here and there, one or two shots in the paint and we get out of here with the win.”

Ale­many used a full-court press from the early go­ing to try to pres­sure Hart into mak­ing mis­takes. It worked on one or two oc­ca­sions, but the In­di­ans were able to break the press for most of the game by mak­ing good passes and by tak­ing care of the ball.

Guards Isaac Dee­don and Jesse Bar­ri­en­tos were of­ten tasked with bring­ing the ball up and did so ef­fi­ciently, speed­ing past Ale­many de­fend­ers to get to the hoop.

Se­nior Joey Harand also did his part in break­ing the Ale­many press, but more im­pres­sive on Fri­day night was his scor­ing abil­ity.

Harand had 12 points in the first half mak­ing 4-of-6 3-point­ers, He then came out in the sec­ond half and hit two more in a row to give Hart a 43-30 lead in the early go­ing of the third pe­riod.

He fin­ished the game with 29 points (7-of-11 from down­town), two re­bounds and two steals.

“He was phe­nom­e­nal,” Kelly said of Harand. “We can’t ex­pect him to score 29 each night, but he took good shots, he led the team, he han­dled the ball and played good de­fense.”

Se­nior Ju­lian Ver­rier was Hart’s sec­ond-lead­ing scorer, fin­ish­ing with 15 points, three re­bounds and a steal.

Se­nior Braden Fuller added 10 points and three re­bounds and sopho­more Dil­lon Bar­ri­en­tos logged four points and four as­sists.

Dee­don fin­ished with four points, three re­bounds and three as­sists and Jessie Bar­ri­en­tos had five points, one as­sist and a steal.

The In­di­ans have just one win so far on the sea­son, but their record is slightly de­ceiv­ing. Hart has a tough pre­sea­son sched­ule and has played nine games in 15 days, leav­ing min­i­mal time for prac­tice.

Kelly said he’d rather sched­ule tough op­po­nents in out-of­con­fer­ence play to help pre­pare his team for Foothill League com­pe­ti­tion.

“We’ve al­ways wanted to play the best com­pe­ti­tion,” he said. “If we take some losses in the pre­sea­son then hope­fully that will teach us how to play in league. We’ve just got to close one and it’s com­ing.”

Hart will con­clude The War­rior Clas­sic on Satur­day, tak­ing on Viewpoint at 2:30 p.m. at Her­itage Chris­tian High School.

Dan Wat­son/The Sig­nal

Hart’s Ben Allen (32), left, and Ju­lian Ver­rier (24) go up for a re­bound against Bishop Ale­many.

Dan Wat­son/The Sig­nal (See ad­di­tional pho­tos on sig­

Hart’s Joey Harand (14) drives against Ale­many de­fender Jonathan Daniels (13) at Bishop Ale­many High School on Fri­day in the War­rior Clas­sic.

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