Head coach Adrian Wiggins uses three words among many to describe the Clovis East boys’ basketball team.
“A team effort.”
Those are the right words to describe the Timberwolves’ 77-46 road win over Clovis High on Friday night. Clovis East sent 12 players onto the court, and every one of them scored.
“We shared the ball really well, rebounded really well,” Wiggins said. “It’s exactly what we said in the huddle – it was a great team effort.”
There was no standout scorer for Clovis East. Senior shooting guard Jamison Cowings led with 14 points. Senior Cam Thompson and sophomore Jeremy Pierro each added 10, but the trio were the only Timberwolves to reach double figures. Starting senior guard Cristian Fuentes headed the perimeter attack and made a team-high three 3-pointers.
Collectively, the team shot nearly 50% from the field in the first quarter, helping Clovis East jump to a 23-7 lead over Clovis High. The Cougars cut the lead to 36-24 at halftime, but the Timberwolves adjusted their press defense to pull away in the second half.
“[Clovis] was doing a good job of breaking the press,” Wiggins said, “and we were fouling them too much. We fouled and stopped the game and gave them free throws, and that was hurting us. I thought we did a better job in the second half of containing that.”
Clovis East (13-9, 2-2 TRAC) will resume conference play at home Tuesday against Central. The Timberwolves are currently slated as the No. 1 seed in Division-II, ranked at No. 13 in the Central Section on MaxPreps.
“Every game these guys play,” Wiggins said, “we feel like we’re growing as a team.”
Clovis High (8-14, 0-4 TRAC) will resume league play at home Tuesday against Clovis West.
Central fends off Clovis North comeback
Sophomore Connor Amundsen led a furious Clovis North comeback and even scored the go-ahead basket with 1:30 remaining in the game, but Central junior Ladanian Streets made five of his last six free throw attempts to secure the 67-63 win Friday.
Central led 35-27 at halftime despite a cold shooting start for both teams. The Grizzlies caught fire after the break and went on an 11-2 run, helping them take their largest lead of the game, 46-29, early in the third quarter.
But Clovis North sparked its comeback with a run of its own. A 10-0 spurt cut Central’s lead to 50-46 with two minutes remaining in the quarter. Amundsen played a big role in the comeback, scoring 22 of his game-high 25 points in the second half.
His father, head coach Tony Amundsen, said the Broncos’ energy and intensity were ignitors to the Broncos’ resurgent run.
“Our pressure picked up a little bit and caused some turnovers, and we got some layups,” Tony said. “That definitely helped. We just couldn’t sustain it. We need to be able to sustain it for the entire game.”
Clovis North remained within four points of Central for most of the fourth quarter, and Amundsen gave the Broncos a 62-61 lead with a diving layup. Central retook the lead with a pair of Streets free throws, and Clovis North could not answer; Amundsen missed a jumper from mid-range and junior forward Jaylen Bryant did not finish the put-back.
Central held a 66-63 lead with eight seconds left after Streets made three of four from the free throw line. Clovis North senior Niko Jones was fouled, missed the first free throw, and purposely missed the second off the front rim, in an attempt to regain possession.
Central recovered the ball and salted away its third league win of the season.
“We can compete with the best as well,” said Central head coach Greg Streets. “I really believe we are one of the top five teams in the Valley, and we just need to show it.”
Central (13-7, 3-1 TRAC) entered Friday ranked at No. 8 in the Central Section on MaxPreps; Clovis North (12-8, 2-2 TRAC) was No. 4.
Clovis North will resume conference play Tuesday at Buchanan.
Clovis West routs Buchanan
Clovis West improved to 4-0 in TRAC play and 22-1 overall with a 64-40 win over Buchanan Friday. Sophomore Jackson Young led the team with 18 points, and junior Issac Martinez chipped in 13 points. Clovis West is ranked No. 1 in the Central Section, well ahead of No. 2 St. Joseph (Santa Maria).