Though Bedgood thinks his team plays best inside, he said he hadn’t seen an effort like Tuesday’s to get the ball into the post. That was part of the reason the Vikings entered their league opener on a six-game losing streak. Dexter Akanno led Valencia with 20 points, with Josh Assiff (6-foot-6) and Jayden Trower (6-foot-7) chipping in 15 points apiece. “It’s been kind of tough for us lately; we’ve been playing a lot of top-level competition,” Assiff said. “We hadn’t been able to play in the post. … A lot of people said we weren’t going to come out here and do our thing, so we made a concerted effort to play special basketball.” Assiff had 15 of his points at halftime to get Valencia out to a 47-33 lead. A breakaway dunk from Adrian McIntyre, who led Saugus with 21 points, gave the Centurions a 12-7 lead out of the gate.
Josh Assiff with the finish, giving Valencia a 19-15 lead, 2:18 1Q, and forcing a Saugus timeout. pic.twitter.com/UKbSJhZkLW— Ryan Posner (@ryanposner_) January 10, 2018
But Saugus never regained the lead past the first quarter. It managed to cut the deficit down to nine points with less than five minutes to go in the game. “It’s a tough task with their height,” said Saugus coach Alfredo Manzano. “We battled with them down there and got into some foul trouble. Luke (Bodeau) got into foul trouble, which was a big blow for us.” Bodeau was second on the Cents with 15 points. Kawakami, who’s ended with 10 points in his Vikings debut. It was a reunion for Bedgood, who coached Saugus for four seasons prior to taking the Valencia job in the offseason. MORE: Defense, 3-pointers earn SCCS win over Valencia “It’s bittersweet,” Bedgood said. “I still care about guys over there.” Valencia will play at Hart on Friday and Saugus will host West Ranch. West Ranch 78, Canyon 44 Austin Galuppo led West Ranch with 27 points. Andrew Austin tallied 16 points, with Deaken Stangl third on the team with 10 points. Hart 63, Golden Valley 44 Caleb Waldeck led Hart with 25 points.
Dexter Akanno led Valencia with 20 points. Josh Assiff and Jayden Trower with 17 points each; Richard Kawakami with 10 points. Adrian McIntyre led Saugus with 21 points. Here was Assiff on getting the win to open league play. pic.twitter.com/lRH2wGXaps— Ryan Posner (@ryanposner_) January 10, 2018