The Bull's Eye

CIF run ends at quarterfinals

BOYS BASKETBALL The Brahmas advance in CIF after winning league title.

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CIF run ends at quarterfinals

Junior CJ Fisher spins his way to the basket in a 49-46 win against Claremont.

Junior CJ Fisher spins his way to the basket in a 49-46 win against Claremont.

AMELIE LEE

Junior CJ Fisher spins his way to the basket in a 49-46 win against Claremont.

AMELIE LEE

AMELIE LEE

Junior CJ Fisher spins his way to the basket in a 49-46 win against Claremont.

Ryan Chae, Sports Editor

For  Diamond Bar High School’s boys basketball team, this season has proven to be one of the most successful  in nearly two decades, winning league for the first time since 2001 and reaching the CIF quarterfinals. However, the run ended on Tuesday night against Riverside Notre Dame in a 71-53 loss.

 The Brahmas finished first in the Palomares League  with a record of 7-3 after starting  the season 0-2. A seven-game win streak in league changed their fortunes. After defeating Newbury Park and La Habra in the first two rounds of the CIF, the boys played yesterday in a quarterfinal match.

“They showed a lot of resiliency, and we ended up picking up seven in a row in league, fighting back. We went through a lot of growing pains, but the maturation over the season is what I attribute our success to,” head coach Henry Frierson said at the end of the regular season.

Last year, the boys’ record was the opposite, winning their first three league games in league and then losing their next seven. This year, Frierson made sure that the boys would not peak after their first few games.

“This year is much different. Every practice and every game, we’ve gotten better as the season rolls on, and here we are in the CIF.  We haven’t even played our best basketball yet,” Frierson said.

The win streak started after a thrilling 72-66 overtime victory over Ayala, followed by a dominating performance against South Hills, 67-38.  

By winning league, the boys automatically reached CIF and seeded high enough to host a game at Diamond Bar. In the first round, the team took on the Newbury Park Panthers. Through junior Mike Gao’s defensive work, where he blocked five shots, and the scoring duo of juniors CJ Fisher and Myles Corey, who combined for 39 points, the Brahmas won their first CIF game in seven years, 62-54.

The second round proved to be more of a challenge as the team visited the La Habra Highlanders. At the end of the first half, the Brahmas were down 32-27 while their defensive anchor, Gao, had to sit out the first half due to an ankle injury from the first round.

Once Gao started in the second half, however, the game immediately swung in DB’s favor as the team went on an 11-2 in the first three minutes of the second half. Gao finished with four blocks, the duo of Corey and Fisher scored 43 points and the Brahmas won 59-53, reaching the quarterfinals.

“I feel like all our hard work has paid off and that Coach Frierson is stepping up into his role…We’ve all had to step up,” senior Kingston Ko said.

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