By GERARDO RECINOS
As the season winds to a close, if you listen closely to the February winds, you can hear a sigh of relief coming from the Alhambra gym.
Players and coaches have still been giving their best efforts for the team, but even after a string of improved results, Alhambra’s latest beating, a 77-24 loss to Campolindo, reinforces one thing: this team needs to be in a new conference.
The Diablo Foothill Athletic League is coming to a close, and with it goes some of the inequality of top teams and lesser opponents.
Campo, who is in third in the DFAL, isn’t having a stellar season. They’re stuck lingering at .500 as they struggle to replace seniors from last year’s Northern California champion squad.
After holding with a quick shooting outburst from Campo wing Austin Clarke, who made three 3-pointers in the opening quarter, the Cougars reeled off a 14-0 run Tuesday, Feb. 16.
Clarke had 16 points in the first quarter alone. His total of 19 in the first half total was more than Alhambra’s 13.
The Bulldogs were hurting due to the shooting prowess of the entire Campo team. Senior Madison Young knocked down a couple of threes, as did fellow senior Sean Yamamoto.
The lone bright spot was the showing from Tyler Clemons and Jordyn Eglite who did a job on senior center Sterling Strother.
However with two men on Strother, Campo nearly always found an open shooter.
Strother did nail a pair of 3-pointers before the end of the opening half, but his third attempt was an air ball. Campo and their fans were so secure of their victory, that even home fans chided the senior with “air ball” chants coming from the home fans.
After a dismal display in the third half, the second half was even worse. After only five minutes of play in the third quarter, Campo had taken a 51-point lead, the worst score-line differential for Alhambra this season.
Alhambra only showed temporary signs of life. They missed shots because they started jacking up 3-pointers to try and take chunks out of the lead, but that left them vulnerable in transition and nearly always resulted in an easy Campo basket.
Mercifully, the referees enacted the running clock for the fourth quarter to help Alhambra leave the gym a little earlier after an ugly defeat.
The loss was the worst of the season for Alhambra in both scoring output and point-differential.
Friday night the Bulldogs will have their best chance to grab their only win of the DFAL campaign when Acalanes comes to visit for the Bulldogs’ senior night.
The Dons have only won two DFAL games all season. The first was a 13-point win over Las Lomas, and the second was a nine-point win over Alhambra.
The Bulldogs will be honoring seven seniors in Friday night’s ceremony.