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Whitney Winter Classic kicks off Wednesday

Wildcats open with North Valleys
By: Andrew Hazard Placer Herald Correspondent
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The Fifth Annual Whitney Winter Classic, Whitney High School, runs Dec. 28-30. Eight schools are participating in the event –California, Capital Christian, Center, Del Oro, Hoover, Laguna Creek, North Valleys and Whitney. Capital Christian (6-3) will play Center (6-1) to kickoff the tournament. Capital Christian is young, but talented, averaging 64.8 points per game. Senior forward Matt Donlan leads the Cougars with 14.8 ppg. Sophomore point guard Tyler Jennings distributes the ball well with six assists per contest, and freshman Trey Belton has been pulling down 7.6 rebounds per game. Center has experience with eight seniors on the squad. Senior guard Christopher Smith has an outstanding 22.7 ppg. He also leads the team in total blocks (13) and rebounds (45). California High School plays Laguna Creek (4-4) in the second game. Laguna Creek averages 61.2 ppg. The Cardinals are led by senior guards Shaquille Cornelius (17.7 ppg) and Barry Ogalue (17.5 ppg). Senior forward Frank Obi dominates on defense turning in three blocks per outing. Del Oro (6-1) will face Hoover (4-5) in the third game of the first round. The Golden Eagles are also experienced with nine seniors. Senior guard Jordan Broyles (14.3 ppg), senior forward Alan Kidwell (12.3) and junior guard Trevor Pistochini (10.5) are the main forces on offense. However, in Del Oro’s game against Whitney, center Nick Lewis came up with 23 points to help defeat the Wildcats. Kidwell also leads in rebounding (5.3 average), and senior guard Rex Hime has been averaging 5.3 assists. The host, Whitney (7-3), will play North Valleys (4-2) in the nightcap. The Wildcats were putting up 51 points per game with senior forward Evan Orrick knocking down almost 16 per contest. Senior guard Sean Smith has been averaging 12.2 ppg. JV The JV tournament will feature Capital Christian, Center, Del Oro, Encina Prep, Franklin, Sheldon, Vintage and the Wildcats. First round will feature Whitney against Capital Christian (12:30 p.m.); the ‘Cats average 53.2 points per game. David Parker (14 ppg) and (8.3 rebounds) leads the club. Vintage High School opens against Encina Prep in the second game, 3:30. Del Oro takes on Center at 6:30, and Franklin meets Sheldon at 5. Franklin averages almost 60 points per game. Post player Benson Osayande (13 ppg) is the team’s leading scorer. Marvin Timothy leads the team in total blocks (10) and rebounds (39). Frosh The freshman squads will also play in the Whitney Winter Classic. Center, Colfax, Del Oro, El Camino, Forest Lake Christian, Grant, Lincoln and Whitney will participate. Forest Lake Christian will play Whitney at 11 a.m. (big gym), while Del Oro takes on Grant in the small gym. Colfax meets Lincoln in the following game at 12:30 p.m., and Center faces El Camino at 2 (small gym). It is a lot of basketball and should be a lot of fun. Whitney Winter Classic Boys Basketball Tournament Dec. 28-30 OPENING ROUND 2 p.m. – Center vs. Capital Christian 3:30 p.m. – California vs. Laguna Creek 5 p.m. – Del Oro vs. Hoover 6:30 p.m. – Whitney vs. North Valleys