The Pinewood boys grabbed the lead back in the West Bay Athletic League basketball race following a 72-68 victory over host Sacred Heart Prep on Friday night.
The Panthers improved to 11-2 (15-8 overall) with only a home game against Eastside Prep remaining next Friday. The Gators dropped to 10-2 (12-10 overall) with road games remaining against Eastside Prep and Priory.
Sacred Heart led 21-12 after one quarter, but Pinewood went on a 39-23 run to blow the game open to a 15-point margin in the fourth quarter. Still, Sacred Heart made a furious run, but Pinewood's late free throws staved off the Gators, who got 17 points from Mason Randall and 16 from Kyle Stalder.
Should Pinewood and SHP finish the regular season tied, the WBAL's tiebreaker system to determine the league champ is:
a) Head to head competition.
b) Record vs. next-highest finisher (tie for first place then look at record vs. second-place team. If tie for second place, then look at record vs. first-place team, then go to third-place team).
c) Second half of league overall record.
d) Winner of originally scheduled second-half head to head game
Also in Atherton, host Menlo School cruised to a 73-33 WBAL win over Crystal Springs on Senior Night. With the victory, the Knights improve to 7-6 in league (9-14 overall) with one regular-season game remaining against Harker next Friday.
Senior Jared Lucian poured in 21 points to lead 10 Menlo scorers. Point guard Ben Simon, also a senior, finished with 16 points, three assists and three steals. Lucian also posted five assists.
Charlie Roth pulled down a team-high eight rebounds, had three assists and six points. Fellow senior Faraz Abbasi picked up nine points, six rebounds and three assists.
Menlo jumped to a 26-10 first-quarter lead and was safely in front at halftime, 34-17.
In Portola Valley, Priory remained tied for third place in the WBAL following a 73-41 romp over Harker. Senior Scotty Harris tossed in 23 points for the Panthers (7-5, 11-6) with Zach Weiss and Emmanuel Ajanaku-Makun each adding 10.
In the SCVAL De Anza Division, Gunn held on to first place as senior Alex Gil-Fernandez poured in 34 points in a 64-44 victory over host Milpitas. The Titans (8-2, 15-2) trailed by 15-14 after one period before pulling away over the next two periods to remain just ahead of second-place Wilcox (8-3).
Pinewood and Menlo school set the stage for a showdown for the regular-season title in the WBAL Foothill Division with solid victories on Friday night.
Pinewood rolled over host Sacred Heart Prep, 57-40, while Menlo topped visiting Castilleja, 55-36. The Panthers (9-0, 18-3) and Knights (8-1, 19-4) will meet Tuesday in Los Altos Hills. Pinewood defeated Menlo in their first meeting.
The Panthers overcame an early 11-9 deficit against the Gators by outscoring their host, 28-17, over the second and third periods. Akayla Hackson tallied 15 points and Hannah Jump 12 for Pinewood while senior Riley Hemm led SHP with 11.
In Atherton, Menlo celebrated Senior Night as Sam Erisman and Hannah Paye tallied 26 and 10 points, respectively, to keep the Knights in second place. Kenzie Duffner grabbed seven rebounds for the Knights while Castilleja senior Ellie Chen had a team-high 22 points.
Menlo trailed Castilleja, 13-12, after one period but outscored the Gators, 15-1, in the third period to put the game away.
In San Jose, Kayla Tahaafe scored 16 points and Zion Gabriel added 13 to pace Eastside Prep to a 59-29 victory over host Notre Dame-San Jose. The Panthers improved to 4-5 in league (12-11 overall) while holding the Regents to just 17 points through three periods.
In the WBAL Skyline Division, Priory held on to a share of first place following a 63-50 victory over host Harker. The Panthers (8-1, 14-5) were led by Tatiana Reese, who had 19 points, and freshman Ila Lane with 15.