Boys varsity basketball beats Grossmont in CIF playoff game

Senior James Miller carries the ball up the court for his team. As a point guard he helps control the circulation of the ball on offense.

AJ Johnson, Managing Editor

Rubber sneakers screeched across the court while the competitive spirits of the players collided. On Feb. 20, Carlsbad High School’s boys varsity basketball team played against Grossmont High School in its first play-off game in years.

As the game began, Grossmont took an early lead of seven points after making back-to-back layups, but Carlsbad began to retaliate when junior Matt Tomaneng made a strong layup in the key while being covered by three players from Grossmont. Finishing the first quarter, senior James Miller attempted a last second shot. but unfortunately missed, leaving the score at 15 to 9 with Grossmont in the lead.

Following the first quarter, loud crowd and cheer started the Harlem Shake as planned by ASB. As the players focused on Coach Ogden, the Carlsbad High School student body showed its support by dressing up in costume and Harlem Shaking with TR.

“The Harlem Shake was a thing of beauty,” junior Sean Deng said. “It sucks that it happened during the end of the first quarter because we had to focus on coach and his game plan, but I peeked over my shoulder and saw loud crowd going insane.”

Starting the second quarter, senior Rob Reddick got a steal off of Grossmont and continued to assist senior Jesse Wright in making a three point shot. Just seconds after that, Miller got a second steal and continued to make a lay-up tying the game at 16 to 16.

Towards the end of the first half with 15 seconds left in the second quarter, Reddick made two free-throws after being fouled while shooting. To finish the first half, Miller made a last second shot making the score 24 to 22, Carlsbad leading.

Starting the third, Miller assisted Tomaneng giving Carlsbad momentum to build a strong lead. Dominating on defense, junior Chase Ogden blocked three-shot attempts by Austin Swisher of Grossmont. Continuing the second half, Wright made two lay-ups and one free throw to finish the third quarter with Carlsbad in the lead 32 to 27.

Wright started the fourth quarter with a strong three pointer putting Carlsbad in a high lead of 37 to 27. Continuing his streak, Wright made back-to-back three pointers which put Carlsbad ahead by 12. Grossmont’s number 34, Bilal Rahim, returned with an attempted lay-up and two free throws.

After being ahead for the majority of the second half, Miller felt confident running out the clock which ended the game 52 to 43 with a win for Carlsbad High School.

“We haven’t had a playoff game at Carlsbad in years and to win a crucial game like this one, with an amazing crowd, it meant a lot to the team and the coaches,” Coach Scott Ogden said.

The boys varsity basketball team continues to practice for its next few games and to prepare for CIF. Coach Ogden has been prepping the team and planning offensive and defensive plays that will be advantageous against the team’s next opponents.

“It’s easy for a team to look ahead at CIF finals, but we can’t do that,” Tomaneng said. “Right now Torrey Pines is our only opponent we have to focus on.”