The Santa Monica High boys’ basketball team reached the CIF Finals last season and the Vikings are doing well in the early portion of this season.
Samohi has a 10-1 record in non-league games. The last three wins have been over Mira Costa 66-43, over Peninsula 65-54 and Torrance 57-49.
Ari Feldman scored 19 points against Mira Costa. The 6-foot-6 senior is the Vikings’ most productive big man and is headed to Cal State Northridge next season on a volleyball scholarship.
Senior guards Bryan Louff and Leo Arnold and junior forwards Willie Goetz and Ed Willis have also played well.
“We’re getting production from a lot of players,” said Coach James Hecht. “It’s been a collective effort.”
Samohi played in the Santa Barbara Tournament this past week (results not available when the Mirror went to press), and will play its Ocean League opener January 10 against Morningside High in the Vikings’ gym.
Crossroads competed in the Torrey Pines Tournament, with four games scheduled, though the results weren’t in when the Mirror went to press. The Roadrunners haven’t played in a week, after defeating New Roads and losing to Pacific Hills and Crawford of San Diego, bringing their record to 8-3.
“We had a good week of practice,” said Coach Kevin Brown.
The roles have changed for Roadrunner stars Michael Ojo and Meric Lagorce-Ross. Ojo has moved inside after beginning the season as the primary ball handler and Ross, a freshman, is learning the point guard position. Both are 6-foot-3.
Ross sees the court well and had several impressive passes against New Roads.
Daryl Roper, who coached Crossroads the last 15 years, attends most games and was present for the one against New Roads.
“Life is good,” he said about the work he is doing now with youth basketball camps.
The season is going well for St. Monica, which has a 9-5 record.
“It’s been much better than I expected,” said Coach Tony Depa.
St. Monica reached the final game of the Windward Tournament before losing to the host team. It was their second loss to Windward.
St. Monica began the tournament with a win over Rolling Hills Prep, then defeated Community Harvest Charter and San Fernando.
The win over San Fernando was termed “the biggest in my three years here,” said Depa.
San Fernando scored the first six points of an overtime period before St. Monica came back to win.
St. Monica is averaging nine three-point baskets per game, led by senior Bryce Hamaguchi and junior Jonathon Azur with four each. The shooting, combined with the steady play of Ryan Zelig, has helped the Mariners to get off to a fast start.
Another win was over Providence, which had a 7-1 record.
In another game involving a Westside team, Malibu absorbed a 66-34 non-league loss to St. Bernard.
The Samohi girls’ team has a 6-5 record following a 53-50 loss to Brentwood and a 64-50 win over Palos Verdes. There will be home games January 6 at 2 p.m. against Notre Dame Academy and January 8 at 6 p.m. against El Segundo.