Our HBA boys and girls varsity basketball teams traveled to Southern California to participate in tournaments over the winter break and both squads acquitted themselves well.
The boys participated in the Leon Davis Classic, sponsored by Whittier Christian High School. The girls participated in the Garden Grove Classic, sponsored by Garden Grove High School. Both tournaments ran concurrently December 26-29 about 13 miles apart from one another.
At Whittier, the HBA boys finished 2nd in their pool – by a point differential tie-breaker – and 4th place overall in their 8-team tournament. Their win over Norwalk (CA) was the boys program's first win on the continent since 1995 when our team won three games in Southern California.
Micah Mitchell '18 was named to the all-tournament team. Kellen Takatsuka '17 led the Eagles with 17 made three-pointers in the tournament. Here are the boys scores:
- Whittier 70, HBA 34
- HBA 48, Norwalk 35
- Ontario 41, HBA 37
- Manual Arts 53, HBA 39
The HBA boys finished non-league play with an 8-6 record and open their ILH season Wednesday, January 4 against Hanalani at HBA at 5:00 PM.
At Garden Grove, the HBA girls also did well, finishing 2nd overall in their 16-team tournament (The GGC is actually a 32-team event divided into gold and silver divisions. HBA was placed in the higher gold division). Among the girls' highlights was a thrilling comeback win in the quarter-finals against Torrance. In that particular game, Lexi Dang '20, Caitlin Ching '19 and Katelyn Nakagawa '18 all made three-pointers late in regulation to help the Eagles overcome a 9-point deficit and force overtime, eventually leading to the victory.
In the title game against Kennedy, HBA broke open a close game to lead 35-23 late in the third quarter. However, the Irish went inside to their primary post player to wear down and ultimately overcome the Eagles, 47-44. Here are the girls scores:
- HBA 51, Bellflower 39
- HBA 56, Torrance 52 (Overtime)
- HBA 42, Canyon 34
- Kennedy 47, HBA 44
The HBA girls have gone 8-2 in non-league games and are currently 4-1 in ILH play. Their regular season resumes Wednesday, January 4 versus St. Francis at St. Francis at 5:00 PM.
Both teams enjoyed a one-day adventure to Knott's Berry Farm on December 30. On other days, the girls went on several shopping excursions, while the boys went to the San Jose Sharks-Anaheim Ducks NHL (hockey) game and the Los Angeles Lakers-Dallas Mavericks NBA (basketball) game. The girls team practiced twice at Chapman University, while the boys team practiced three times at Whittier Christian.
The week kicked off with our HBA administration sponsoring a pre-tournament fellowship at Olive Garden on December 26, with over 60 people in attendance. Athletic Director Deren Oshiro shared a devotion with the group, followed by President Ron Shiira offering words of encouragement and a prayer for our teams, families and supporters.
Other highlights of the trip were the visits with the alumni who supported the teams at the various games and events during the week. Many went to multiple games and events. Among the alumni in attendance:
- Melissa (Marshall) Anozie '97
- Amber Au '12
- David Bartosik '02
- Jennifer (Chang) Duncklee '00
- Dominique Hart '15
- Amy (Marshall) Hankins '97
- Isaac Hayashi '08
- Jay Huckabone '73
- Jayna Lee '97;
- Carole Ann (Nakama) Masaki '95
- Alan Matsui '75
- Becky (Yonamine) Montgomery '90
- Deren Oshiro '86
- Katherine Pang '06
- Natalie (Han) Phillips '90
- Ron Shiira '75
- Keith Sugiura '90
- Michael Tongg '03
- Candi (Han) Wada '88
- Darren Wada '87
- Rylie Wada '15
- Robin Yamaguchi '77
All athletic schedules are posted on www.hba.net/athletics