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Hoover basketball upsets first-place Crescenta Valley

Hoover Tornadoes get 23 points from Francisco in 64-53 Pacific League win against Crescenta Valley Falcons, first in rivalry since 2008.

January 30, 2013|By Charles Rich, charles.rich@latimes.com

GLENDALE — Jash Francisco strolled into a quiet Hoover High gymnasium about three hours before game time and spent 45 minutes honing his shooting skills.

Several hours later, backed by a sterling three-point shooting effort, the Hoover boys’ basketball player turned the venue into a noisy one.

“Just to get prepared, I wanted to come in and shoot by myself for a while,” said Francisco, who finished with a game-high 23 points, including seven three-pointers, to lead Hoover to a 64-53 Pacific League upset victory against Crescenta Valley on Wednesday. “It helped me get ready because we needed to win.

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“When I hit my first three, I figured I could be in for a good night.”

More like a sensational night, as Hoover built a huge lead in the second half and never let Crescenta Valley, ranked seventh in the latest CIF Southern Section Division I-A poll, mount a comeback, as the Tornadoes defeated the Falcons for the first time since Jan. 18, 2008. Hoover (12-11, 4-7 in league) pulled off its second straight upset win, beginning with a 68-66 home league victory against Muir on Monday. Muir is ranked 13th in Division IV-AA.

Perhaps the Tornadoes, who made 12 three-pointers and converted 12 of their 15 free-throw attempts, have chosen the right time to get on a hot streak and make a bid for a playoff berth.

“For the school and the kids, it’s great,” said Hoover Coach Jack Van Patten, whose team suffered a 69-36 loss at Crescenta Valley on Jan. 14. “The league is really close and we are real confident with the way we are playing right now.

“We are running our offense a little better each game by moving from side to side. We are also playing some good defense. I think Jash is one of the best shooters in the area. He’s dangerous when he can catch and then shoot.”

Francisco, a senior guard, provided a quality shooting demonstration against Crescenta Valley (18-6, 9-2), which entered the evening tied for first in league with Pasadena

He made a three-pointer to give Hoover a commanding 31-14 advantage with 1:36 left in the second quarter. Hoover made eight three-pointers in the first half, including four from Francisco, to grab a 33-16 halftime lead.

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