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Basketball: Breakers go down with fight

Laguna Beach basketball teams close out season with strong efforts in CIF Southern Section playoffs.

February 27, 2014|By Mike Sciacca

The season has come to an end for both the boys' and girls' basketball teams at Laguna Beach High, each just a few points shy of keeping their respective seasons alive, one a few steps shy of reaching the semifinals, the other, of moving on to the quarterfinal round.

The boys' team journeyed Tuesday to San Luis Obispo for a quarterfinal date with Mission Prep in the CIF Southern Section Division 4AA playoffs and a second-round matchup that pitted two of the division's highest seeds. In a game where the teams were separated by just one point heading into the final quarter, it was the host and third-seeded Royals who were able to come away with a 59-52 victory over the sixth-seeded Breakers.

The win sent Mission Prep (24-4) on to a Friday semifinal game against No. 2-seeded Westlake Village Oaks Christian.

Laguna, champion of the Orange Coast League, had its season come to a close at 23-6.

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The Breakers streaked to a 16-6 lead in the first quarter but Mission Prep outscored the Breakers, 21-9, in the second quarter to grab a 27-25 halftime lead.

The Royals were up, 40-39, through three quarters.

"I thought we were ready to play, were well-prepared and game plan-wise, we had the right mix," Laguna Coach Bret Fleming said. "We had the right idea coming into the game, but we just kind of broke down on defensive fundamentals and offensively, we had some opportunities that we didn't take advantage of."

The Breakers put three players in double figures led by senior guard Noah Blanton, who topped all scorers with 19 points. Senior forward Josh Adam was right behind Blanton with 18 points, and senior guard Alec Wulff scored 11 points.

Junior guard Quinton Adlesh paced three Royals in double figures with 17 points.

"He's a really good point guard and a Division 1 prospect, and I thought we did a pretty good job on him," Fleming said of Adlesh. "We held him to 17 and I think he was averaging 28-30 points a game."

Laguna, which started postseason play with a 58-42 victory Feb. 19 over Rosemead Don Bosco Tech, picked up its second playoff win Feb. 21 by overtaking 11th-seeded Whittier Christian in the second half en route to a 67-55 home court win. The Breakers trailed, 26-21, at the half, but outscored the Heralds, 27-14 in the third quarter, to go in front for good.

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