May 28, 2024

OC Sports Zone: Community First

PHOTOS: Big third quarter lifts Villa Park past Huntington Beach 73-51

Riley Schroeder (left) and Damien Parker led Villa Park to a win Wednesday night. (Photos Tim Burt, OC Sports Zone)

Villa Park’s boys basketball team took another step toward defending its title at the Godinez Invitational Wednesday night at Godinez.

To see the slide show, please click on the first photo

The Grizzlies (5-1) broke open a fairly close game with a big third quarter and went on to defeat Huntington Beach 73-51.

Villa Park led 34-27 at halftime but came out fired up in the third quarter outscoring Huntington Beach 25-10 to break the game open.

“We try to pressure and pressure over time we think just builds and at some point in time, we hope it will have an affect and cause some turnovers and get us a run going, so we just needed to stay the course,” said Villa Park Coach Kevin Reynolds.

“Huntington Beach shot the ball really well in the first half. The goal is to win the next game as it always is. We’re excited about where we’re at and where we’re headed.”

Villa Park (5-1) was led by junior guard Damien Parker, who had 21 points and sank four 3-pointers. Fifteen of his points came in the second half.

Senior forward Riley Schroeder added 18 points for the Spartans.

“Riley is our returning guy, he’s an all-league guy,” Reynolds said. “Damien backed up a little at the point last year and he’s starting to come into his own. He’s only a junior so we see good things for him.”

Dino Sdrales added 12 points and four 3-pointers for Villa Park, ranked seventh by the Orange County Register.

Huntingon Beach Coach Tino Zaragoza, the Oilers first year coach, was encouraged by his team’s play in the first half.

‘We were knocking down shots that first half and talking and communicating,” said Zaragoza, a former standout player at Northwood. “Then in that third quarter we came out flat. I told them, against teams like that you cannot come out flat. They’re going to run it up and that’s what they did.

“For the most part we played hard and we played well. It’s something to build on for sure.”

Luke Kumaric and Michael Hennessy added eight points each for Huntington Beach (2-6).

“Michael Hennessy is our senior captain and whenever you need a rebound, he’s there, he’s a leader,” Zaragoza said. “Alan Athey, a junior point guard, is kind of the general of the team. Jason Ford, a junior, can score whenever he wants to.”

-Tim Burt, OC Sports Zone; timburt@ocsportszone.com