By GERARDO RECINOS
They may not have let on too much in pre-game warm ups, but it was clear Alhambra’s boys basketball team needed this win.
Staring down the barrel of a winless league campaign, the boys took care of Ygnacio Valley easily on Friday, Jan. 27. Alhambra’s boys routed the Warriors 71-30, their largest margin of victory this season.
And it really wasn’t even close.
Alhambra went on a 26-4 run in the first quarter that basically put the game out of reach. That run was lead by senior Thomas McDonald, who had 11 points in the first quarter alone.
McDonald led the scoring drive by doing what all teams aim to do early on: get to the basket. And he was backed up by an equally impressive effort from Jordyn Eglite, who did a lot of the same as McDonald.
On top of scoring, they played nearly perfect defense. The Bulldogs only allowed a single field goal in the first quarter, and the Warriors only scored four points.
The performance was unlike any from this season, and will hopefully be the spark that can turn the season around.
Because after a single quarter the Bulldogs knew that they put themselves into a position where they could take a load off and cruise.
At least in every aspect other than rebounding.
Prior to the match coach Chris Petiti had made a deal with his players about rebounding the basketball. Something they’ve struggled with all season.
Alhambra had a size advantage but that hasn’t really helped them when they’ve had it this season. And even then, one of the team’s best rebounders, Brody Eglite, isn’t the tallest player on the team.
Brody Eglite has been one of the team’s first players off the bench this year, but in a larger role with the big lead, he was able to play more minutes. The sophomore Eglite brother had 12 points in the win, and worked well on the glass.
He and junior Isaac Frierson made the most of their extended minutes. Frierson had eight points on the night, with all eight points coming in a high-energy fourth quarter.
The Bulldogs put together a brilliant half, and went into the break up by 29 points, but more impressively, they triggered the running clock immediately into the fourth quarter after a steal and lay up from junior Kinrick Todd.
The Warriors made a valiant effort to flatter the score line in the final eight minutes of play, but the Bulldog reserves held on and made the most of their minutes in relief. All the while taking time to make a case for themselves to get more minutes in the coming matches.
As the second half of the season starts of Friday, the Bulldogs will have a chance to change their season’s trajectory. Their games against Berean, Concord, and Clayton Valley will have a big impact on how the program will view their season once it’s over.