Boys’ basketball crushes Bonita in CIF quarterfinals

By Jack Davis

The boys’ varsity basketball team continued its playoff run with a 63-49 victory over Bonita in the CIF quarterfinals Tuesday night in Taper Gymnasium.

Despite being favored, the Wolverines fell behind 8-0 early in the first quarter, as the Bonita guards were able to easily break the Wolverines’ full court press. Bonita finished the first quarter ahead by nine, and took a 33-32 lead into halftime.

But the Wolverines came out strong in the second half, changing from a full court man-to-man press to a more conventional half court man-to-man defense that limited Bonita to only 16 second half points.

Guard Michael Attanasio ’10 hit two three-pointers to open the third quarter for the Wolverines, giving them a 38-33 lead they wouldn’t relinquish. After Attanasio’s two threes turned the momentum in the Wolverines’ favor, their defense stepped up the intensity, forcing two turnovers that were converted into five more Wolverine points.

The 11-0 run gave the Wolverines a 10 point lead, which never fell below eight. The squad ended any possibility of a Bonita comeback midway through the fourth quarter when guard Nate Bulluck ’10 stole the ball from a Bonita guard at midcourt, and broke alone towards the basket for a thunderous dunk that electrified the Wolverine crowd and players.

“I felt the emotion of all of Harvard-Westlake when I put that dunk through,” Bulluck said. “It got the energy of the crowd up, and at that point we pretty much had the game in hand.”

“Our play and adjustments in the second half gave us a cushion,” guard Chris Barnum ’10 said, “but that dunk put it away.”

With the win, the Wolverines will advance to CIF semifinals Friday against Sonora at Calabasas High School.

“Calabasas has a great facility, it’s really just a huge gym so we want to have lots of fan support,” Bulluck said. “The more fans we get, the more energy we have, the better chance we have at winning.”