By: Ray Conner
The surging Broncs varsity basketball squad won its fourth straight game to roll into the last two weeks of the regular season.
Kern Valley was back in the High Desert League with games versus Desert and Frazier Mountain.
A strong first half propelled the Broncs against Desert, while the game was never in doubt against Frazier Mountain.
With the pair of victories, Kern Valley sits one game under .500 overall and 6-3 in the HDL. One-half game ahead of Bishop and in third place.
When the Broncs traveled to Desert, the Scorpions were ready to sting. Kern Valley came out strong and put Desert in an 11-point hole. The Broncs poured in 19 points and the defense allowed the Desert team just eight points. In the second the lead ballooned to 14 points as the Broncs dropped in 13 points. The Scorpions scored 10 points to make it 32-18 at halftime.
Coming out of the break the Broncs were able to keep the game a rout as they added 40 second half points. Desert was able to drain the baskets for 41 points, but could not overcome the huge lead built by the Broncs in the first half. The final score was 72-59.
Leading the charge were Kaden Preston and Shelton Alley. They each had 24 points to share the team lead in scoring. Preston hit three times from long-distance, while Alley drained one from three-point land. Davin Lee added 11 points, including a three-pointer. Spencer Hansen got in on the scoring with seven points, including one from behind the three-point arc. Lucas Harris finished with four points, while Ryan Walker scored two points to wrap up the offense for the Broncs.
Alley was chairman-of-the-boards as he cleared away 14 rebounds to complete his double-double. Preston and Harris each grabbed eight boards, while Lee pulled down four rebounds. Hansen, Trey Bushling, and Walker each had a pair of rebounds, while Kieran McCarthy was credited with one rebound.
Lee handed out seven assists to lead the team. Hansen recorded five, while Preston had three assists. Walker dished out a pair of assists, while Harris had one. Harris swatted away three shot attempts by Desert. Hansen had one block in the game.
Head coach Brian Christianson said, “Nice to get a game like this. Good to see a few of the players really have good games to build their confidence.”
Three days later the Falcons of Frazier Mountain came to town. The Broncs bounced from the gate and never were in danger. They took off running and the offense dropped in 14 points in the opening quarter. The Kern Valley defense stifled the Falcons allowing them just two.
Taking a 12-point lead into the second, the Broncs did more of the same as they drained the baskets for 19 more points. The defense continued to shut down the Falcons as they gave up five points. The halftime score favored the Broncs big at 33-7.
The second half was more of the same. The Broncs dropped in 18 in the third and finished it off with 12 in the fourth. Frazier Mountain scored 32 second half points, but fell considerably short. When the final horn sounded it was 63-39 for Kern Valley.
The Broncs had three players that score in double figures and one that completed a double-double.
Harris was the top scorer for Kern Valley in this one with 13 points. He hit once from downtown. He was followed by Alley and McCarthy with 10 points apiece. Bushling poured in nine points, including a three-pointer. Preston finished the game with eight points, while Lee had six points. Walker and Tyler Strange would close out the scoring with two each.
Harris ripped down 10 rebounds for a double-double and the team-lead on the boards. Alley had seven boards, while McCar-thy was credited with six rebounds. Preston and Hansen each grabbed five rebounds, while Walker had four boards. Lee and Strange each had a pair of rebounds, while Bushling and Jeffrey Cawein each had one rebound.
Preston was the team leader in assists with five. Hansen recorded four assists, while Bushling, Lee, and Walker each had a pair of assists. Harris, Alley, Cawein, and Strange were each credited with one assist.
Christianson said, “Nice to get a game like this. Good to see a few of the players really have good games to build their confidence.”
Kern Valley will now go in a tough stretch of games as they played Rosamond on Tuesday. They will play at home on Friday against Cal City.