The latest installment of the Mission Prep-SLO High boys basketball rivalry Friday night is setting up to be another classic.
The past two seasons have featured tight games filled with raucous student sections and controversial calls. Last February, Mission Prep senior Parker Jones played the role of hero, coming up with a steal and hitting two free throws to pull off a comeback win. Two seasons ago, Mission Prep’s Matthew Blaney, a SLO High transfer, torched his old school and helped lift the Royals to a 65-51 win. In the sequel at SLO High — a game that featured streakers, students dressed as nuns, a controversial call and a whole lot of trash talking — Mission Prep won again, 73-67. Mission Prep went on to win the league title both seasons.
As close as the games have been of late, Mission Prep has dominated the series. SLO High last beat Mission Prep in 2011. Since then, the Royals are 9-0.
But this season might be the Tigers’ best shot to end the win streak. Led by a pair of youngsters — sophomore Carson Leedom and freshman Assani Berkeley — SLO High is off to its best start in more than 10 years and entered this week with a record of 14-3 (3-0 PAC 8).
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Standing tall in the Tigers’ way is Mission Prep senior Kyle Colvin, who has made 30-point games a habit so far this season. On Friday, Colvin scored 28 of his 32 points to lead Mission Prep (9-5, 3-0 PAC 8) to a comeback win over Arroyo Grande. If SLO High can beat Pioneer Valley and Mission Prep defeats Righetti on Wednesday, both teams will enter the game as the last undefeated teams in PAC 8 play.
SLO High plays host this time around, with tip-off set for 7 p.m.
Morro Bay boys soccer streaking
The Morro Bay boys soccer team made it five wins in a row with a 3-1 win over Templeton on Thursday. It’s Morro Bay’s seventh win of the season — a big accomplishment for a team that hasn’t won more than six games since it notched 13 wins in the 2012-13 season.
With first-year coach Tim Ladd leading the way, Morro Bay (7-2, 2-0 Los Padres) has found a combination that works with standout players at forward, midfield and in goal.
Junior goalkeeper Jacob Furbee, who started high jumping during his sophomore season and made it all the way to the CIF State meet, is averaging more than six saves per game and can cover a lot of ground with his 6-foot-4 frame. Senior midfielder Orion Schwellenbach has 11 goals and five assists in nine games. Senior striker Giacomo Fausti, who had a hat trick in the win over Templeton, has four goals in the first two games of league season.
The Pirates’ toughest test will come on the road Thursday against Lompoc (5-4-2, 2-0 Los Padres).
Paso Robles girls basketball starts undefeated
Junior Kim Buchanan and senior Sidney Meneses have led the Paso Robles girls basketball team (8-4, 3-0 PAC 8) to three straight wins to open PAC 8 play. The Bearcats will take on Arroyo Grande (8-6, 2-1 PAC 8) on Wednesday, the toughest test for Paso Robles so far. But every girls team in the PAC 8 will likely end up chasing Righetti (12-1, 3-0 PAC 8). The Warriors have a bunch of starters back from a team that went to the CIF State tournament last season and are looking to repeat as league champs and make another deep run in the playoffs.
Paso Robles, Arroyo Grande, along with Mission Prep, will likely fight it out for second place.
Leaupepe drops 40
Cal Poly women’s basketball standout Dynn Leaupepe started off the Big West Conference season in a big way last week. Leaupepe scored 40 points and grabbed 10 rebounds Thursday against UC Riverside to lead the Mustangs from 13 down to an 87-82 overtime win.
Her performance was the sixth highest individual point total in a women’s NCAA game this season.
She followed that with a 30-point, eight-rebound performance in a loss to UC Santa Barbara. It was the fifth time this season she has scored more than 25 points in a game. Leaupepe is 68th in the nation with an average of 18.4 points per game. Her twin sister, Lynn, is second on the team with an average of more than 11 points per game.
Cal Poly (7-7, 1-1 Big West) will play its conference home opener at 2 p.m. Saturday against CSUN.