Corona defeats Mountain Pointe in second round of playoffs


Photo by Sunrise Staff Photo

Written by Jake Pyatt, Sports Editor

In the second round of the state basketball playoffs, the No. 1 seeded Aztecs cruised to a 78-58 win over No. 16 Mountain Pointe.

The two teams played each other just over two weeks before the playoff matchup, with the Aztecs coming out on top 76-68.

“We played them (Mountain Pointe) earlier on in the season,” junior point guard Alex Barcello said. “We kept them in that game because we were not solid with the ball.”

Corona opened the game fiercely with a 7-0 run.

“We came out with a lot of energy early,” head coach Neil MacDonald said. “We played great defense those first three minutes of the first quarter. We jumped on them early and stayed on them.”

The Pride cut it to a 30-26 game at one point late in the first half, but the Aztecs closed the half strong leading 38-30.

“The only time when we got in trouble (on defense) was when we gambled,” MacDonald said.

The Aztecs opened the second half, just like the first, on a 7-0 run. The Aztecs never looked back and pulled away for a decisive victory.

“We did a good job of finding holes,” MacDonald said. “We did good attacking the basket and getting to the free throw line.”

“We were energetic from the tip,” Barcello said. “We kept our foot on the gas and kept playing hard.”

The Aztecs will play Sunnyslope in the quarterfinals at Wells Fargo Arena on Wednesday at 7:45 p.m.

“We’re just going to come into practice and do what we got to do,” Barcello said.