Basketball team enjoys successful season
By Hector Trujillo
Thanks to consistent play, the Scripps Ranch High School boys varsity basketball team was able to earn a number 3 seed in the CIF-San Diego playoffs after finishing the regular season with an impressive 18-10 record.
The Falcons beat West Hills 55-30, High Tech San Diego 55-53 and Madison High 61-58 in the CIF San Diego Section Division III Championship playoffs. Now, the team is headed to the Division III championship game to play San Dieguito Academy on Feb. 24, 5 p.m. at San Marcos High School, 1615 W San Marcos Blvd., San Marcos.
The team started off the season red hot with back to back blowout wins over Santana and Crawford high schools by a combined score of 182-69, but then fell to Mission Hills High School in what turned out to be the Falcons’ worst loss of the season, 99-66.
“Our core group of guys really kept the team on track and we’re proud of our 18-10 regular season record,” said head coach Brock Flint. “We’ve had some amazing memories and lessons learned. The season was just a blessing to be a part of.”
The Falcons would bounce back from that early season loss and go on a hot streak, winning eight of their next nine games including two dramatic road wins against Grossmont High School on Dec. 7 by a score of 61-58, and another versus Mira Mesa High School on Dec. 13 by a score of 48-44. The only defeat during that nine-game stretch came at the hands of Madison High School, 74-79.
“We had so much contribution from all our guys at practice and in games … just a solid team all around,” Flint said.
This season marked the biggest turnaround from one season to the next in more than 20 years after the team went 4-16 previously. This turned out to be the highest scoring regular season in team history with 1,660 points; an average of approximately 60 points per game, including a 42-point performance by senior team captain Caden Flint. That was the first time a Falcons player had broken the 40-point mark since the 2006-07 season. He also led the team in points with 14, rebounds with 9 and blocks with 3 per game, while also breaking the school record in three-point shots made in a season with 83, and in a game with 11.
Other standout performers this season were junior captain Jaiden Schube who averaged 8 points, 6 rebounds and 2 steals per game. Seniors Jared Balaoing and Chase Weber averaged 13 and 9 points respectively, with senior late comer Lamont Wilkerson also making major contributions.
The team closed the last part of the season with an 8-8 record, with three of those losses being by five points or less, and two of those coming down to the final possession.
“They’re all great young men and we’ve got it figured out headed into playoffs,” Flint said. “I’m really proud of all of them for working together and staying the course. Challenges are a part of the game and life, so the lessons have been awesome for all of us.”