Canyon fails to upset Etiwanda in the Division 1 Boys’ Basketball Semifinals – Orange County Register

RANCHO CUCAMONGA — The Etiwanda Boys basketball team’s relentless defense tends to wear down opponents, but it took a little longer on Friday against a stubborn Canyon team.

Top-seeker Etiwanda put on an 11-0 run midway through the fourth quarter to battle past Canyon 67-57 in a CIF Southern Section Division 1 semifinal game.

Etiwanda (25-4) advances to the Finals where the Eagles meet No. 2 Mater Dei (26-6) on Feb. 25 at the Honda Center in Anaheim. The season for Canyon (25-6) continues in the CIF State Playoffs.

“One of the things we’re talking about is our energy in the fourth quarter,” said Etiwanda assistant coach Daniel Ryan. “We wear the teams down for three quarters and in the fourth quarter we’re after them.”

Outside of the first three minutes of the game, Canyon was ahead or tied for the first three quarters. The Comanches even led at half time with nine points (32:23).

The Eagles closed the gap to four points (45-41) to earn fourth place, and Canyon still led 49-46 as the Eagles continued their run that only lasted about two minutes. It started with a 3-point play from Carrington Pierce to level the game, a three-point play from Amare Campbell to give the Eagles a definitive lead, a slam dunk from Channing Cade, and after Canyon’s Brandon Benjamin missed the front end of a one-on-one, Jimmy Baker hit a 3-pointer and Etiwanda led 57-49.

For the remainder of the game, the Comanches came no closer than six points.

“They upped the defensive pressure,” Canyon coach Nate Harrison said. “They had some key offensive rebounds and some guys were making some key 3s out of those offensive rebounds. We knew it was coming. That’s what they do. I thought we controlled the entire first three quarters of the game. We should have been a little bit more up and we turned it around too much on this small track. credit to them.”

Baker led Etiwanda with 20 points, 13 of which came in the second half. Pierce had 15 points and Campbell had 12. Cade had 10 points but his best work was on defense.

He didn’t start the game, but after Canyon’s 6-foot-5 sophomore Benjamin got off to a good start, Etiwanda brought Cade off the bench.

While Benjamin led all scorers with 30 points (including 20 first-half points and six rebounds), Ryan liked Cade’s performance so much that Cade started the second half. Cade had at least three blocks and three steals.

“He (Cade) stepped up and executed,” Ryan said. “He blocked his shot a few times and his length really bothered No 24 (Benjamin).”

Harrison had nothing but praise for Benjamin.

“Brandon Benjamin is the best player in Southern California,” Harrison said. “If someone doesn’t believe that, I don’t know what they’re seeing.”

Senior Johnathan Carey hit three 3-pointers for 11 points, the only other Comanche player in double digits.

Before Jaden and Josh Goodall’s injuries at the end of the season, Harrison said Canyon had his eyes on making the Open Division playoffs. But a run to the Division 1 semifinals is still impressive. Canyon fails to upset Etiwanda in the Division 1 Boys’ Basketball Semifinals – Orange County Register

Russell Falcon

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