Basketball squad stays undefeated in tournament


MAKING PLAYS: Guard Cubin Molzen ’22 looks across the court at his teammates during a preaseason practice in Taper Gym on Nov. 10.

Paul Kurgan and Leo Saperstein

The boys basketball team won first place in the Marantha Rose City Tournament on Dec. 4. The team finished with an overall record of 4-0 at the tournament, moving its overall season record to 8-0. 

The squad won its first game of the tournament 73-46 against Palisades High School on Nov. 29. The team played Providence High School on Dec. 1, defeating the Pioneers 60-51. Although they trailed the Pioneers 14-18 after the first quarter, the squad led in the second and third quarters, outscoring Providence High School by margins of seven and 11 points, respectively. 

The team played South Pasadena High School on Dec. 3 and won 78-42. Small forward Santiago Hernandez ’23 said the team’s consistent intensity during practices contributed to their success during games. 

“[As a team, we have been very] competitive,” Hernandez said. “We continue to make each other better at every practice, hold each player accountable and encourage them to play their best.” 

The team also secured a 79-57 win against Cajon High School in the tournament on Dec. 4. Point guard Trent Perry ’24 said the squad’s success this season stems from a strong bond among teammates and coaches.

“Our brotherhood [between] players [and] coaches is what has [led] us to success,” Perry said. “The amount of love we have for each other is immeasurable.”

Perry and teammate Brady Dunlap ’23 were selected as All-Tournament players during the Marantha Rose Tournament. Perry said he was grateful to share his accomplishment with his teammate. 

“For me, being named [an] All-Tournament [player] is a blessing,” Perry said. “They could’ve picked any one of us because that’s how much of an impact everyone has. I’m just happy I was chosen.”

In its first two games of the season, the squad defeated Verbium Dei High School and University High School on Nov. 15 in the St. Monica Showcase. Team captain and point guard Dahnte Russell ’22 said he has ambitious goals for the team.

“I am looking forward to shocking the world,” Russell said. “I feel that this team is special and when we piece everything together, we are incredibly hard to beat. I love my guys, and I know that we all want to continue our three-year Mission League title run, and we understand what it takes to do that.”

Russell said Basketball Program Head David Rebibo pushes players to play their best, especially when facing adversity.

“Rebibo holds an expectation for us that he won’t drop because he knows who we can and will be,” Russell said. “In tough times and rough patches, he finds ways to bring the best out of the guys and make sure we are locked in.”

Rebibo said while injuries prevented the team from playing together early in the season, he expects to see playoff success after the squad builds strong chemistry.

“The more time we get together, the better we will be and the more connected we will find ourselves,” Rebibo said. “Regardless of talent, [our goal is to be] a cohesive group, [which] genuinely cares and appreciates one another’s successes. We believe that when that happens, the league titles, CIF titles and state titles will take care of themselves.”