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January 18, 2011 > HAAL powerhouses take care of business

HAAL powerhouses take care of business

By Kevin Yin

The week of Monday, Jan. 10, to Sunday, Jan. 16, was business as usual for the boys and girls basketball teams of the Hayward Area Athletic League.

For the dominant boys teams-Castro Valley and Bishop O'Dowd-they put a bit more space between themselves and the rest of the conference.

Castro Valley opened the week on Jan. 12 by passing a tough test put to them by San Leandro, prevailing 65-54. The contest was surprisingly tied at the end of the third quarter, but San Leandro was unable to put together a final push, and Castro Valley escaped with the win. Senior forward Juan Anderson led Castro Valley with 19 points, while senior forward Warren Wright chipped in nine points and 11 rebounds. San Leandro got another productive night out of senior guard Hameed Ali, who had 17 points for the Pirates.

The Trojans followed that game up with a more convincing 80-58 win over Hayward on Jan. 14. Senior forward Alex Foster had a huge night against the Farmers, leading Castro Valley with 22 points. Castro Valley's record now stands at 14-1, 6-0 in league play.

Bishop O'Dowd enjoyed a soft schedule this week, as their two opponents, Tennyson and San Lorenzo, have the two worst records in the HAAL. O'Dowd took care of business, annihilating Tennyson on Jan. 12, 81-34, and then giving the same treatment to San Lorenzo, winning by a final score of 77-41.

Bishop O'Dowd is now 13-2, 6-0 and is ranked No. 4 in the state in the latest Cal-Hi Sports ranking, while Castro Valley is ranked No. 11. O'Dowd is also ranked No. 38 in the nation in the Powerade Fab50.

Moreau Catholic High took a couple of positive steps in turning their season back around, picking up wins over Arroyo and Tennyson after having lost their previous three games. The Mariners edged Arroyo, 68-63, on Jan. 12 thanks to a huge game from senior guard Andy Mitchell, who poured in 33 points. Arroyo was led by 18 points each from senior forwards Khari Swift and Khari Owens.

On Jan. 14, Moreau became the latest team to pile onto Tennyson's misery, beating the Lancers 78-56. Mitchell again powered Moreau's scoring, this time putting in 28 points. Moreau's overall record is now 10-5, although the Mariners are only 2-4 in league play.

San Lorenzo managed to return some joy into a generally bleak season, as the Rebels snapped a four game losing streak by beating Mt. Eden, 61-57, on Jan. 12. San Lorenzo was led by junior guard Davon Stewart with 19 points, while junior shooting guard Kevin Clerkley was Mt. Eden's top scorer with 17 points.

Meanwhile, in HAAL girls action, it was yet another intriguing week.

Bishop O' Dowd (8-6) kicked off the week on Wednesday, Jan. 12, as they extended their bid for inter-league perfection to 5-0 by obliterating Tennyson High (4-12) with a 68-29 win.

Next, Castro Valley High (10-6) and San Leandro High (5-10) sparred off in a tightly-contested match-up that ended with a 55-46 win for Trojans despite a 16-point performance from Pirates' Marshantae Farris.

It was followed by Mt. Eden High (7-8) winning 48-38 over San Lorenzo (0-10), a school who's still in search of their first win of the season.

Moreau Catholic (10-6) then posted a 50-37 victory over Arroyo (9-7). While their overall records are comparable, they have performed at opposite spectrums in regards to league play as Moreau is 5-1 and Arroyo is 1-5.

Later that week, on Thursday Jan. 13, Arroyo fell to Hayward High (10-4) in a 59-49 game.

The following day, San Leandro beat Mt. Eden 55-48, Moreau Catholic blasted Tennyson 55-26, and Castro Valley topped Hayward 67-55 in a game in which Briyana Clark scored 21 points for the losers.

The final game was on Saturday, Jan. 15, when Skyline High ousted San Leandro 49-42 primarily because Lauren Hill dropped 21 points on 64 percent shooting in arguably the most exciting game of the week.

Mihir Bhagat contributed to this article.

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