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League races will go down to the wire

Area basketball teams will have a tough fight on its hands in league play, especially in the Sunset League, where anyone is capable of winning each night.

January 05, 2011|By Mike Sciacca, michael.sciacca@latimes.com
  • Edison's Zach Bauer drives on Calvary Chapel's Eric Gomez during Tuesday night's game.
Edison's Zach Bauer drives on Calvary Chapel's… (DON LEACH, HB Independent )

If the first month of the season is any indication of what to expect in the coming weeks, then league races for the local prep basketball teams figure to be intense.

The Sunset League girls' basketball race starts at 7 tonight, with Marina playing at Newport Harbor, Edison going to Fountain Valley and Huntington Beach hosting Los Alamitos.

The chase for the Sunset League boys' hoops title begins 7 p.m. Friday, with Edison entertaining Fountain Valley, Huntington Beach playing at defending champion Los Alamitos and Marina hosting Newport Harbor.

Also at 7 p.m. Friday, Ocean View will take its first step as repeating as champion of the Golden West League when the Seahawks host Orange. The Golden West League girls' basketball season doesn't start until next week.

Both the Brethren Christian's boys' and girls' teams started the week by opening Academy League play Tuesday.

In girls' basketball, Edison and Huntington Beach, which went to Arizona two weeks ago and claimed division (Anderson and Red, respectively) championships at the NIKE Tournament of Champions, are considered the top two teams in the Sunset girls' race, according to Marina Coach Butch Fredlow.

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He said the battle for third place will be an "alley fight" between Fountain Valley, Los Alamitos, Newport Harbor and his Vikings.

Both Edison and Huntington enter league play with 12-1 records. The Chargers began the season with an 11-game win streak and the Oilers currently are on an eight-game run.

"The girls have really worked hard and the results prove that," Huntington Coach Russ McClurg said. "I tell the girls to stay humble and have great respect for the opponent they are playing. We will continue to work hard and take it game by game."

Ocean View, which finished second to Segerstrom last year in Golden West League girls' basketball, begins league play Tuesday at Orange.

"For the first time since my dad (Ocean View boys' head coach Jim Harris) or I have been coaching this team, we're are favored to win league," Ocean View Coach Kim Morris said. "We have a very good cast back with seven seniors and we have been playing seven underclassmen regularly. We have some experience and size."

As for the Sunset boys' race, undefeated Edison (15-0) might be considered the front-runner for the crown, but Chargers Coach Rich Boyce sees a dogfight looming.

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