Monte Vista Mustangs will play in the State Championship for the first time in school history
Posted March 22, 2014 by Justin Lum in
GetSportsFocus.com – Almost two years ago, Nick Jones was hired as the new head coach of Monte Vista where he was previously the head JV coach for four years before taking the head varsity job at Castro Valley in 2007. It was almost too good to be true for a Mustangs alum who graduated from Monte Vista High in 1998. Under Jones’ watch, his team is now 31-1 (school-record) and is going to the CIF State Division I Championship for the first time ever.
Freedom (26-7) was making only it’s first NorCal Finals appearance in school history. Even after being swept twice by Monte Vista, including a 57-41 loss in the NCS Division I title game, it was a whole new ball game. Senior forward Elliot Smith finished with a game-high 19 points but his most important shot came with 12 seconds left to play. Smith banked a three-point shot from NBA-range to tie the game at 49, taking the contest into overtime.
The Mustangs’ teamwork led to 10 points in OT after being down 51-49 early in the extra period. Grant Jackson led MV with 14 points while Brendan Pedley finished with 13 points, both of those players knocking down three-pointers consecutively to ice the win. Cal Poly-bound Trevor John scored 12 points, hitting two clutch free-throws to make the score 53-50 during OT. Center Spencer Rust combined for 20 points, a decrease compared to the last two match ups but Rust added nine rebounds and four blocks.
Monte Vista will face Centennial-Corona (29-3) next Saturday in the Sleep Train Arena for the CIF State Division I Championship.
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