Misi's all-around mission

Crescenta Valley High senior center refining his game to prepare him for college career

January 16, 2012|By Charles Rich,

Having been accustomed to being one of the top scoring threats for the Crescenta Valley High boys' basketball team and in the Pacific League the past two seasons, Christian Misi saw his responsibilities change entering this season.

It wasn't a complete shock for the senior post player, who had put up quality numbers across the board last season on a team steeped in tradition. In the long run, the idea was designed to help Misi prepare for his collegiate career at Cal Baptist University in Riverside.

"I'm not scoring as much as last year, but it's still been a good year for me so far," said Misi, who is averaging 15.6 and 10.8 rebounds per game through Friday. "So, now I'm helping out in other ways, like grabbing more rebounds and focusing more on defense.


"[Crescenta Valley Coach Shawn Zargarian] told me about it last summer and he thought it would help me improve my overall game. I'm starting to see the results."

Misi enjoyed a banner campaign last season. He was tabbed the league's co-most valuable player and earned a spot on the All-CIF Southern Section Division I-A first team after averaging 18.5 points and 11 rebounds per game and helping the Falcons place second in league behind Pasadena. His numbers paved the way for him to earn a spot on the All-Area first team.

This season, Misi and Falcons have put themselves in position to challenge for the league championship, once again. With Misi in the process of refining his game, the Falcons are 15-3, 4-1 in league and are ranked sixth in the latest division poll entering today's league home contest against Muir.

"I've been working a lot more on my defense and guarding the perimeter," said Misi, who had 27 points and 15 rebounds to help the Falcons post a 67-60 victory against Silverado (Nev.) in a pool-play contest of the MaxPreps Holiday Classic at Cathedral City High on Dec. 27. "My rebounding has gotten a lot better on both ends.

"I've been able to crash the boards and get us more possessions."

It's translated into plenty of victories for the Falcons.

Zargarian said Misi, flanked by senior forwards Davis Dragovich and Rudy Avila to provide a bevy of points and rebounds, has provided a presence on both ends of the court.

"He's vocal and he sounds like a four-year varsity player with strong leadership skills," Zargarian said. "We've been stressing to him not to put pressure on himself and not do anything out of the ordinary.

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