Santa Clarita Christian School boys basketball has been a powerhouse in the Heritage League, missing the playoffs only one time in the last decade.
“I just made a commitment to try to serve kids in terms of coaching,” said SCCS head coach James Mosley in a phone interview. “We try to really focus on developing our kids, help them get better and connect with them through the game of basketball. We’ve had some great wins and some losses, but ultimately, God has blessed our kids and impacted them in a positive way.”
The Cardinals were back at it again with another deep run in the CIF-Southern Section Ford Boys Basketball Division 2AA Championships this season. They even secured their spot in the playoffs of the State Championships with a 60-44 win over Fairmont Prep on Feb. 18 at The Master’s University.
“Kaleb Lowery and Caden Starr have been really huge for us the last few years,” Mosley said. “It’s really easy to plug guys around them and be successful.”
The standout seniors were integral pieces to the win over Fairmont Prep. Starr scored in bunches with 14 points and Lowery commanded the background with a team-leading seven rebounds and 13 points in the paint.
Other big players this season have been senior Ty Harper and juniors Tiago Soares and Josh O’Garro.
Now, SCCS is trying to return the Division 3 State Championship back to Canyon Country, with its first State Championship coming in the 2017-18 season. They have rolled through the playoffs with their eyes on the prize and their biggest test came against Chaminade on Feb. 21 in North Hills.
“They’re really coming together at a great time,” Mosley said of his team. “Whenever you have a chance to win a CIF-SS title or a chance to compete in state, as a coach, you get really excited this time of year because you’re getting close and the opportunity is there.”
The Cardinals beat Chaminade 89-83 in a triple-overtime thriller. That win advanced them to their third-straight CIF-SS Championship Game.
Mosley, who was promoted to SCCS’s athletic director in early January, believes his program’s success is the result of a combination of two things: his philosophy as a coach, and a blessing he has received through talented athletes who receive his coaching well.
Key elements to the Cardinals’ game have been aggressive defense and utilizes the size and length that is featured on their roster. In the last decade, that concept has brought success to SCCS and shows signs that the future is bright, as well.
“(I’m) really proud of this group and how they’re coming together,” Mosley said, “and I’m just excited to see what we can accomplish.”