By GERARDO RECINOS
After improve performances against the second and third place teams in the Diablo Athletic League, the Bulldog boys basketball seemed to be trending upward.
But when first place Clayton Valley Charter came to visit, all momentum gained over the past two weeks was flattened in a 77-60 loss on Feb. 10.
Like in many of their lopsided losses this season, the Bulldogs have found ways to compete in spurts. However they haven’t managed to find ways to compete for a full 32 minutes with teams like the Ugly Eagles.
Credit to Clayton Valley, they sit in first place in the DAL and haven’t lost a league game. The task was always going to be a huge ask.
What hurt the Bulldogs was their inability to stop the bleeding during a prolonged scoring run by their opponents.
After playing a tight ball game in the opening five minutes of the first quarter, the Eagles went on a 10-0 run filed by a pair of 3-pointers by junior JD Williams. The guard had 13 points on the night, and was one of four Clayton Valley players who reached double digit points.
With senior Thomas McDonald in a spot of early foul trouble (he collected his second foul of the game half way through the first quarter), the Bulldogs turned to another senior to lead them.
Jordyn Eglite frequently gets the praise from his coach Chris Petiti for being a steady player that does what he can to make the team better.
On Friday night the team needed him to scorer points and he did.
His 11-point first half lead all scorers up to that point, and his 17 total was a game-high. The senior center with leading the team after going down 13 points after only a quarter.
He peppered a pair of jump shots in form short range, and was helped out by a resurgent effort from Kinrick Todd. The junior guard had five points in the half.
The combined effort between the duo had the Bulldogs set up with a positive outlook for the second half. A five-point deficit was nothing.
But Clayton Valley poured in points at a rapid pace. Their 9-2 run in the final two minutes turned a five-point deficit into a 12-point lead.
And there wasn’t much turn around from that point on.
Clayton Valley shot the ball better than Alhambra and that allowed them to hold onto their lead. There were some protests from their end about what they felt were poor calls from the officials, but it didn’t throw them off their goal.
Even when the Bulldogs built some momentum, the Ugly Eagles stomped it out.
The scoreline flattered Alhambra a bit in the end, mostly due to a solid cameo from players like Isaac Frierson, who scored eight points in the final four minutes. But the result remained the same.