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March 1, 2011 > HAAL squads falter in opening rounds

HAAL squads falter in opening rounds

By Kevin Yin

Seven boys teams and six girls teams of the Hayward Area Athletic League entered the North Coast Section basketball playoffs on Feb. 22. While the league's powerhouses, Castro Valley and Bishop O'Dowd, predictably prevailed, the bulk of the league's entrants did not fare well.

Castro Valley and Bishop O'Dowd's boys teams both enjoyed first round byes, launching them straight into second round action. In the second round on Feb. 25, top-seeded team in DI, Castro Valley blasted the eight seed Antioch by the final score of 77-53. Star point guard Roderick Bobbitt scored 22 points, while senior forward Chris Read added 20 points. The Trojans will face fourth seeded Newark Memorial on March 3.

Bishop O'Dowd, the top-seeded team of Division III, crushed eighth seed Del Norte, 66-44 on Feb. 25. O'Dowd's star junior forward Brandon Ashley led the Dragons with 17 points while senior forward Terrence King Jr. chipped in with 14 points. O'Dowd will face fifth-seeded San Marin in third round action on March 3.

Among the five other boys teams selected to compete in the tournament, only San Leandro was able to escape the first round. The seventh-seeded Pirates defeated the No. 10 Heritage, 69-67, thanks to a buzzer-beating jumper by senior guard Hameed Ali who also scored a team-high 21 points. San Leandro was unable to duplicate that success in the second round, however, falling to second seeded De La Salle, 46-36, despite 24 points by Ali.

Twelfth-seeded Hayward lost to fifth seed Northgate 67-56, while No.14 Arroyo fell to Las Lomas, 66-53. No.11 San Lorenzo, which made a furious late season charge even to make it into the competition, was unable to perpetuate that success, falling to No.6 Redwood, 68-59. Junior guard Davon Stewart and sophomore forward Ali Faruqbey each scored 23 points in the Rebels' losing cause.

Bishop O'Dowd's girls squad matched the achievement of the boys squad, using its first round bye to advance directly to the second round where the top-seeded Dragons smote eighth seed Sonoma Valley, 68-34, on Feb. 25 with sophomore point guard Ariell Bostick scoring 14 points. The Dragons will face No.5 Acalanes on March 3.

Like the HAAL boys teams, the majority of the girls teams were unable to find success in the postseason. No.9 Hayward lost to Maria Carrillo by the final score of 52-34, while No.12 Arroyo was smothered by Dublin, 60-30. Castro Valley's girls did advance beyond the first round, defeating No.10 Livermore 70-47 thanks in part to 22 points by junior point guard Elena Ala, but the Trojans were badly beaten in the second round by second seed Carondelet.

Moreau bypassed the first round by virtue of a bye, but the fourth seed Mariners were ousted in the second round by No.5 Acalanes, 56-46. Junior guard Kristen Segismundo scored 12 points for Moreau in the defeat.

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