Down by four points with just under a minute left in regulation, emotions and pressure got the best of the Morro Bay High boys basketball team in its 73-60 loss in the first round of the Southern Section Division 4A playoffs against Covina on Wednesday night.
With about 50 seconds remaining in the third quarter, one of the Morro Bay players “lost his cool,” coach Dave Yamate said, resulting in a technical foul.
That allowed the Colts (17-11) to build their lead up to eight points and they then put the game away at the free-throw line Covina finished 30 of 34 on free throws, while Morro Bay was 18 of 23.
Morro Bay (16-11) had a one-point lead at the half but was outscored 46-32 the rest of the way.
“It was a tough, physical, back-and-forth kind of game,” Yamate said. “We had opportunities and kept them close until that final minute when things got a bit out of hand. I was proud of the overall effort though for the game and the season.”
Edward Griley had a game-high 30 points and 12 rebounds for Morro Bay. Luke Munds was the only other Pirate in double figures, adding 11 points.
Bishop Amat 59, San Luis Obispo 47
In the first round of the Division 4AA playoffs, the Tigers (12-15) lost after leading 22-18 at halftime.
“The real difference in the game came at the free-throw line,” San Luis Obispo coach Jim Thompson said. “They were 22 for 31 whereas we only had six total attempts.”
Mike Hansen led the Tigers with 13 points, and Matt Hannula added 10.
Morningside 66, Nipomo 42
The Titans (15-12) fell in the Division 4A playoffs to fourth-seeded Morningside.
The Titans held a three-point lead after the first quarter but were outscored 58-31 the rest of the way.
Ryan McNeil led Nipomo with 16 points.
Mission Prep 48, Costa Mesa 41
The Royals (16-10) dominated the first quarter, outscoring Costa Mesa 18-3.
But Mission Prep got into foul trouble in the second, and Costa Mesa answered the Royals’ first-quarter success and cut the lead to 28-26 at halftime.
Mission Prep increased its defensive pressure in the second half and preserved the lead en route to the Division 5AA win.
Andy Rowley, Sam Cowitz, and Arthur Lane led the Royals with 11 points each. The fourth-seeded Royals will face 13th-seeded St. Genevieve at home on Friday at 7 p.m.
Arroyo Grande 64, Hart 47
The Eagles (20-8), the No. 15 seed in the Division 3AA playoffs, won their first-round game at home.
Andrew Hogue scored 20 points for Arroyo Grande, Kelly Shepard had 17 and Brent Vanderveen added 15.
Avalon 44, Coast Union 32
After holding a 21-14 halftime lead, the Broncos (17-8) went stagnant in the third quarter, getting outscored 18-4 in the first round of the Division 6AA playoffs.
“The third quarter was definitely the swing quarter. They came out much better and we were never able to grasp the ground after that,” Coast Union coach Tim May said. “We had built our lead on steals and running by their press and that made me nervous as our half court game struggled.”
Eddie Salazar led Coast Union with 10 points, Sean Mertens had nine and Dylan Vialpando added eight.
Shalhevet 75, North County Christian 33
The Firehawks’ hot shooting and quick hands made for a quick playoff exit for the Crusaders (11-12) in the 6AA playoffs.
It was really over from the beginning as North County Christian was down 40-20 by halftime, only to see it worsen in the second half as they allowed 51 percent field-goal shooting and committed 35 turnovers. Twenty-five of those turnvovers were steals.
Daniel Katches had 16 points and 13 rebounds for North County Christian.
Nipomo 3, Canyon 2, 2 OT
Thanks to Juan Rodriguez’s 17 saves in goal, Nipomo (12-12-2) prevailed in the wild-card round of the Division 3 playoffs.
Buddy Kichler and Norberto Rasgado netted two early goals, and the Titans were up 2-1 at the half. Canyon’s Mohammed Roknipour’s 50th-minute penalty kick tied the score at 2.
Finally, two minutes into the second overtime, Ben Jiminez lobbed a free kick into the box and connected with senior Eric Pulido, who sent a header into the upper right corner to win it for Nipomo.
Ben Jiminez assisted on all three goals for Nipomo.
The Titans will play Woodbridge on Friday in the first round at Irvine High.
San Luis Obispo 3, Cerritos Valley Christian 1
The Tigers (14-9-1) kept their eight-game unbeaten streak alive with a dominant road victory in the wild-card round of the Division 5 playoffs, setting up a first-round game at 3 p.m. Friday at Pomona (18-3-2), the top seed out of the Valle Vista League.
Erick Cordova, Jordan Knauer and Trevor James scored goals, and Matthew Conelly had two assists for the Tigers.
Girls Water Polo
Arroyo Grande 14, Chaparral 2
Katie Sverchek and Kim Johnson helped fuel the Eagles’ (26-5) offense in the second half as they got the easy victory in a Division 3 first-round playoff game.
“We started out slow, only building a 4-1 lead by half,” coach Steven Allen said. “Then we figured it out at half and came out and poured on the offense.”
Sverchek had five goals, Johnson scored four and Caitlyn Taylor added two goal.
Kylie Anderson had 12 saves in goal.
St. Lucy’s 19, Atascadero 3
After Tuesday’s close win propelled Atascadero (13-17) into the first round of the Division 3 playoffs, the Greyhounds met their match in top-seeded St. Lucy’s.
After scoring the first goal of the game, Atascadero allowed 11 unanswered goals to finish the opening period.
Ally Reed, Bailey Kelly and Claire Leong each scored a goal for the Greyhounds.
South Pasadena 25, San Luis Obispo 3
The Tigers (16-10), facing the fourth-seeded team in Division 3, fell in the first round.
Eva Bakker, Elizabeth Waddell and Jesse Magliari all scored for San Luis Obispo.