en route to a 68-50 win in the semifinals of the La Salle/Temple City
Holiday Classic at La Salle High.
"This was a good team game and a good win," Hofman said. "Everyone did
their job and we received big baskets from everybody in important
situations. I was very pleased with our defensive effort because this is
a good team to hold to 50 points."
La Canada (11-2) saw its once 16-point lead be trimmed to six with
7:07 remaining, but outscored St. Bernard, 22-10, the rest of the way to
earn its coach a milestone victory.
"This is a fun team to get [win No. 300] with," said Hofman, who is
300-104 almost midway through his 15th season at La Canada.
"To get this far, you need to have a lot of talent and a lot of great
players, and I have been fortunate to have coached a number of talented
players and teams."
Despite a small lapse in the third quarter, the Spartans controlled
the game the entire way, with different players carrying them in each
The first quarter belonged to junior guard Robbie Neyland, who scored
seven of his game-high 18 points and grabbed the first of his team-high
Phil Swenson, who had played only sparingly in La Canada's
quarterfinal win against L.A. Marshall due to his recovery from a knee
injury, helped carry Hofman's squad in the second.
The senior forward, along with junior Mark Moore, scored six points
each to build the Spartans' halftime lead to 11 points.
"Mark's scoring and rebounding in the first half were big keys to this
game for us," said Hofman of the junior forward/center, who had eight
points, five rebounds and five steals.
"Phil did a nice job on the defensive boards and this was one of the
best games he's played this season."
Jordan Ballard scored nine of his 12 points during a 2:30 stretch in
the fourth quarter to help the Spartans put the game away. St. Bernard
(8-7) was led by Brandon Nunnaly's 11 points and 11 rebounds.
La Canada 16 17 13 22 -- 68
St. Bernard 12 10 12 16 -- 50
LA CANADA -- Ballard 12, Neyland 18 and 8 rebounds, Moore 8 and 5
steals, Gaudino 10, Turley 2, Kim 4, Swenson 14.
* Three-pointers: Neyland 3, Ballard 2.
ST. BERNARD -- Brooks 3, Hackett 4, Bevans 9, Taylor 10, Nunnaly 11
and 11 rebounds, Penn 13.
* Three-pointers: Bevans, Brooks.