Without its top post presence Jordan Tyler and with no Jeffrey Ray for most of the evening on Friday night, the Braves still played with relentless energy on the Bryan Ayer Court floor – and improved to 6-3 in league games.
Lompoc scored 19 unanswered points to blow the game open in the second quarter before cruising to the 68-40 rout of Nipomo in a Los Padres League boys basketball game.
Braves first-year head coach Paul Terrones said he loved the acceleration his guys played with, but also how Lompoc (9-13 overall) responded to the Ray injury, who left with a swollen ankle during the first quarter.
“I liked the speed of the game the most. But I was really proud of our guys responding with losing two starters like that to injury,” Terrones said. “For them to step up and play the way they did – that’s a huge team victory for us. Hopefully, it will build our confidence and when those guys are healthy, we can be a step ahead.”
Lompoc was already without Tyler, who sat out the game due to what Terrones called a hyperextended knee. Tyler is set to be evaluated for his injury on Monday while Ray, a returning senior guard, will get his evaluation this weekend, Terrones said.
Nipomo scored the first basket at the 7:45 mark through a 3-pointer. Lompoc’s Andrew Villa then attacked the basket with his layup that drew contact underneath the hoop, placing him to the line to help tie things up at three.
Lompoc would extend the lead to 10-3 with Villa scoring half of those points. After the Titans (5-15, 3-6 in the LPL) answered back with their 6-0 run, the Braves turned to Villa again to help take the 14-9 first quarter lead.
Then, Ruben Cortez took control of the Braves’ tempo in the second quarter. The football and baseball star energized LHS with his 10 second quarter points, plus became the distributor to Ryan Morgan and Villa on fast break moments. Terrones applauded Cortez for the way he helped blow the game open during that 19-0 run.
“He just stepped up and took it upon himself to get to the basket,” Terrones said. “I thought we were settling for some shots against their zone. And I always preach to the guys to don’t settle for that stuff, get to the rim. And he definitely did that.”
Morgan finished with a team-high 15 points. Benicio Cayabyab gave the Braves their jolt from the bench with his 13 points, including one series that saw him score five points in less than two minutes. Cortez finished with 10 while Raymond Moore added seven points off the bench – including five in the fourth quarter. Xavier Nix – fresh off of his football recruiting visit to Williamette University earlier in the week – scored four points in a reserve role.
Nipomo was led by Darren Sosa’s 17 points. He was the only Titan in double figures as Mason Wells followed with his six points while Mathias Echavena added five.
Lompoc takes on the league’s second best team Santa Maria on the road on Monday. Nipomo will host Orcutt Academy. Both games are set for 6:30 p.m.
Cabrillo 69, Santa Maria 21
The Conquistadores stayed unbeaten in the Los Padres League with their 48-point road trouncing of the Saints on Friday.
Erin Jenkins – who recently scored past the 1,500-point mark on Wednesday – led the way with 21 points. Jesse Jenkins added 10 points. Thea Regan also scored 10 points for the Conqs, who are now 17-2 overall and 9-0 in the LPL.
Defensively, Alyssa McCune swatted two shots while Regan and Alyssa Stewart led the way in steals with five apiece. Denisse Martinez added four steals for the CHS defense.
Cabrillo has not lost an LPL game since February of 2016, when it fell to Lompoc 71-52.
Lompoc 54, Nipomo 33
The Braves bounced back from an emotional Wednesday night loss to Templeton by beating the Titans on the road by 21 points.
Danielle Morgan scored 24 points to lead the way. Mya Mendoza added 10 points. Alyssa Grossi scored seven while Julie Shepherd scored six.
Abbey Gutierrez led the Titans with nine points. Clarissa Simonson added eight and Kat Anderson had seven. Shantille Simonson helped out with six points.
The Titans are 9-11 overall and 4-5 in leauge.
Lompoc 2, Nipomo 0
The Braves are yet to lose an LPL game this season, improving to 9-0 in the LPL with the shutout of the Titans at Huyck Stadium.
Jovanny Limas and J.D. Montelongo scored for Lompoc. It’s the seventh time this season the Braves have shutout an opponent.
Lompoc 5, Nipomo 0
On a chilly night at NHS, the Braves played in what head coach Jason Cochrane called "one of our more balanced efforts of the season" in the dominating rout.
Ayziah Simmons scored twice for LHS. Hannah Montelban, Lisette Calderon and Selena Garcia also got on the score sheet for the Braves, who are now 8-5-1 and 7-3 in the LPL.