Varsity boys to face Calabasas in 1st round

After finishing the regular season with a record of 21-5, the varsity boys’ basketball team is headed to CIF playoffs on Friday against Calabasas.

The Wolverines also earned their 10th Mission League Championship after Verbum Dei broke the tie atop Mission League by upsetting Crespi in their final game of the season.

“I’ve been very impressed by how they finished the season,” head coach Greg Hilliard said. “We’ve had three games with overtime or buzzer-beaters and we’re 3-0 which speaks volumes about their strength.”

“Jabari Trotter ’07 and Renaldo Woolridge ’08 need to continue to play well, but we play every game with the intent to win,” Hilliard said.

“We’re taking it game by game and trying to get far as we can,” Woolridge said. “We’ve worked hard up to this point and hopefully it will all pay off in the end.”

Woolridge has been a key contributor this year, and looks to continue to be an influence.
“Playoffs is a time when you don’t worry about individuals,” Woolridge said. “Whatever it means, passing, rebounds or scoring, I’ll do it.”

The Wolverines already played Compton, the team they could face in the second round of CIF if victorious their first round matchup with Calabasas, in the Ocean View Tournament. In the  tournament, they went 2-2 while beating Villa Park.

“There are no real glaring problems, but we don’t have our starting center, and we can’t expect to succeed in the second and third rounds if we don’t have our full team,” Hilliard said.

The team could potentially end up playing one of the top programs in the country like Compton or Mater Dei in later rounds.

“It’s exactly what we expected,” Hilliard said. “We played [Compton] earlier in the year and they have a star who is beyond stoppable, the only way we can really hope to stop him is if he stops himself.”

When asked about the possibility of playing a powerhouse like Compton, Woolridge said, “I’m ready for the challenge. We’re underrated because we can catch up against teams like that. There’s a high chance for us to win a game like that and that’s what we need to think about.”