By Aaron Valdez
Four Pasadena-based schools, including Pasadena, Muir, La Salle and hosts Maranatha, hit the hardwood on Tuesday to tip off the 17th Annual Rose City Roundball Classic.
The Southern California renowned tournament is a six-day expedition in which 16 teams duke it out for the title in a double-elimination bracket.
Half of the first-round matches took place on Monday while the other half took place on Tuesday. All Pasadena teams played their opening game on Tuesday as La Salle took on Alemany, Muir took on Oaks Christian, Pasadena took on Culver City and Maranatha took on St. Genevieve.
La Salle vs. Alemany
The Lancers were given the chance to set the tone as they opened the day with a tough match-up against the Warriors. However, they struggled and played from behind for a majority of the contest.
Alemany’s defense proved too robust, preventing La Salle from getting anything going. The Lancers kept the deficit within single digits until early in the third when the Warriors eventually ran away with the lead and a 74-58 win.
Muir vs. Oaks Christian
The Mustangs got off to sluggish start in the first quarter against the Lions but quickly rebounded in the second to take a 26-24 lead at the half.
To Muir’s dismay, Oaks Christian turned the tides for good, regaining the lead in a methodical and effective fashion. Muir kept it interesting all the way through but wound up falling 63-56.
Ethan Fleming finished with 21 points for the Mustangs.
Pasadena vs. Culver City
With the Pasadena schools going 0-2 halfway through the day, the Bulldogs decided it was time to get in the win column. The runners-up from last season’s CIF-SS Division 1 Championship game took a little while to warm up, but once they got up to speed, there was no looking back.
Culver City put up a formidable effort but Darius Mason’s 20 points and Danny Pina’s 19 were too much for the Centaurs to overcome, especially in the later stages of the game. Pasadena went on to comfortably close out the game 78-69.
Maranatha vs. St. Genevieve
Hosts Maranatha rounded out Tuesday’s slate with a game against St. Genevieve that was all but over by the end of the first quarter.
The Minutemen dominated in all phases of the game, holding the Valiants to a mere four points in the opening period. The lead ballooned to 30-14 by halftime as Maranatha eventually cruised to a 55-30 victory.
Andrew Quach and Wes Clarkson each netted 12 points for the Minutemen.
All four teams will play again on Thursday where La Salle and Muir will respectively play against Culver City and St. Genevieve in the consolation bracket quarterfinals. Pasadena and Maranatha will respectively face off against Alemany and Oaks Christian in the championship bracket quarterfinals.