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La Serna can’t catch up to Los Altos, falls 65-52

WHITTIER – With perhaps one of the most intense games of the preseason for the La Serna boys basketball team, the visiting Los Altos Conquerors eventually wore down the Lancers and came away with a 65-52 non-league victory Monday (Jan. 6).

The Lancers were led by a trio of players in double figures, with junior forward Joaquin Altamirano leading the way with 12 points. Altamirano poured in three 3-pointers in the first quarter.
Senior guard Jacob Arreola and junior guard Ruben Nunez added 11 and 10, respectively.

Los Altos was led by 6-10 center Jazz Gardner with a game-high 15 points, while junior forward Devin Porter added 11 points.

The CIF-Southern Section Division I Conquerors improved to 13-3 overall, while La Serna is 12-9 (including Wednesday’s Del Rio League win) overall.

The game started with a fast-paced, high-scoring fury with both teams playing very physical throughout the opening quarter. Los Altos held a slim, 21-20 lead after the first quarter.

Highlighting the first quarter for the Lancers was Altamirano pouring in 11 of his 12 points, which included his three long-range baskets.

“I love playing teams like Los Altos, who play with intensity,” seventh-year La Serna coach Marino Angulo said. “I’m very proud of the fact that despite the Los Altos quick start, our team never backed down.

“Their height really hurt us, but other than that I feel we played them pretty even. It’s great for the community to play local non-league opponents.”

Adding to the excitement of the crowd for the Monday night game was junior guard Peter De Guzman (5 points).

La Serna’s Peter de Guzman (3) goes up for a shot as they play Los Altos during their non-league game at La Serna High School in Whittier on Monday, January 6, 2020. (Photo by Keith Durflinger)

“The crowd’s energy made this one of my most memorable games I’ve played in so far,” De Guzman said.

Los Altos held the Lancers to only two baskets in the second quarter for nine points and took a 36-29 lead at the half.

Both teams picked up the scoring pace in the third quarter with Los Altos outscoring the Lancers, 19-16 and extending its lead to 10 points, 55-45.

Arreola and Altamirano each scored six points to lead the Lancers effort in the quarter.

The pace slowed in the final quarter as neither team scored in double figures as Los Altos managed just eight points and the Lancers seven.


Del Rio League Results

DRL play began Wednesday with a pair of games for the boys and girls teams.

La Serna and Cal High picked up opening game wins for the boys and El Rancho and Cal were victorious for the girls.

Santa Fe (11-2) had a bye this week in the DRL and defeated Gahr, 62-23 in non-league action on Tuesday.

Boys
Cal High, with a seven-point, 41-33 lead heading into the fourth quarter held on for a two-point, 50-48 win over Whittier (9-8, 0-1) and improved to 13-7, 1-0.

Cal High senior Mateo Martinez leads the team in scoring with an 11.7 per game average. Cal will host Santa Fe Friday (Jan. 10), while Whittier travels to El Rancho.

La Serna defeated El Rancho, 65-30, and was led by Altamirano with a game-high 16 points, along with 11 points from senior forward MJ Aristegui. Senior forward Courtlan Armstrong scored eight points and senior forward Kevin Perez (two 3-pointers) and Arreola added seven, respectively.

El Rancho was led by sophomore forward Matt Partida with 11 points, followed by seven points from senior guard Hector Arevalo.

“We got off to a quick start and never looked back,” La Serna coach Marino Angulo said. La Serna has a bye and will travel to Santa Fe next Wednesday (Jan. 15).

Girls
El Rancho (15-5, 1-0) held on and defeated visiting La Serna, 57-54 Wednesday (Jan. 8). The Dons jumped out to a 15-8 first-quarter lead and entering the final period, built up a six-point, 42-36 lead. The Lancers outscored El Rancho, 18-13, to fall by three points.

El Rancho will visit Whittier on Friday (Jan. 10) and La Serna has a bye and will continue league play next Wednesday (Jan. 15) at Santa Fe.

The Dons were led by senior guard Jaylene Oviedo with a game-high 22 points.

Cal High (6-11, 1-0) defeated visiting Whittier, 51-29 and was led by a pair of double-figure scorers. Junior forward Desirae Martinez led all players with 18 points, followed by senior guard Kassandra Ramirez with 15.

Cal will host Santa Fe Friday (Jan. 10). Game time is 5:15 pm, while Whittier will host El Rancho in a 5:15 pm game.

Girls Water Polo
La Serna (10-1) and Santa Fe are heading for a Del Rio League showdown next week as the two league leaders will face off at Santa Fe Tuesday (Jan. 14). Game time is 3:15 pm.

In the meantime, Santa Fe (12-1) will host Kennedy Friday (Jan. 10) in a non-league game. La Serna defeated Temple City Wednesday (Jan. 8), 7-4.

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