Based solely on height and athletic ability, the Pasadena High boys’ basketball team should have easily romped past Hoover, and though the Bulldogs posted a 70-60 win last Friday night in a Pacific League contest, it took a 7-1 outburst over the final two minutes and 35 seconds, and power forward Brandon Jolley’s game-high 22 points and small forward Andre Spight’s 17 points to seal the deal.
“I’m happy to get a win,’’ said Pasadena Head Coach Tim Tucker, whose club is now tied with Crescenta Valley for first in league after Muir defeated the Falcons in overtime. “We came in with a few players sick. The flu bug hit some of our guys.”
The Tornadoes trailed 50-43 entering the fourth quarter and got within 63-59 on a bucket from Arvin Atakhanian (13 points).
Pasadena, ranked 66th in the state, shot 50 percent (13 of 26) at the half, and forged a 33-22 lead.
The Bulldogs (15-5 and 8-1 in league) followed that by sinking 14 of 21 (66.6 percent) in the second half, and outscored Hoover by three points in the fourth quarter as Jolley chipped in with six points.
Jolley, who pulled down seven rebounds, tallied seven points in the first quarter and added five points in the second quarter.
“We had too many turnovers and too many missed shots,’’ said Tucker, pointing out at least three lob passes and shots that didn’t find the mark. “All of our mistakes led to baskets for them. I’m not happy, but a win is a win, so I’ll take it.”
The Tornadoes (10-11 and 2-7 in league) had no answer for Jolley, who dominated the painted area, and was at least five inches taller and 35 pounds heavier than any defender Hoover threw at him.
“I didn’t want Spight to go off on us like he has in the past,’’ said Hoover Head Coach Jack Van Patten. “Our guys are tough, and we hung in there with them, but their size really hurt us.”
Even so, Hoover found the basket on 48 percent of its attempts (24 of 50), made 11 of 13 at the free-throw line, and were outrebounded, 26-23.
Hoover’s 21-point third quarter allowed the hosts to get back into the fray as the Tornadoes made nine of 17 from the floor.
Teo Davidian, who had a team-best 19 points, scored four points in the third quarter and nine in the fourth quarter.
Jash Francisco (13 points) scored seven points in the third quarter, while Francis Roncal (13 points) dropped in six.