Relief is now on the Lompoc High boys basketball team’s side – after finally getting into the Channel League win column.
The Braves blew out Santa Ynez 63-27 on Tuesday night inside Paisola Pavilion at Bryan Ayer Court in a contest where either Lompoc or the Pirates would claim league win No. 1.
And it was the blue and white finally snapping their current C.L skid.
“We definitely wanted to get that monkey off of our back,” said LHS head coach Paul Terrones. “It’s not where we want to be right now, but I’m definitely happy with the way they bounced back after Friday night.”
Last Friday, Lompoc fell to rival Cabrillo by three points – as freshman Reggie Orr scored 21 points against the Braves.
But this time, LHS (11-12 overall, 1-5 in the C.L) went back to its fast-paced attack.
Kalub Ramirez helped save a potential Braves turnover but nicely lobbed the ball into the air for Collin Oestereich, who proceeded to put the basketball through the net to energize the crowd early and give LHS a 4-1 lead.
Lompoc never trailed throughout the night; controlling the tempo and playing stout defense on its home floor.
Oestereich and Ryan Morgan were forces on the rebounding end. Ramirez and Benecio Cayabyab snatched steals for LHS and lastly, the Braves held the Pirates to a season-low 27 points. Santa Ynez’s previous season worse for points in a game was 28 in its 56-28 road loss to Cabrillo on Dec. 18.
Not only were the Braves itching to finally end their winless start in league, but Terrones pointed out how the team realizes they’ve witnessed games slip out of their hands.
“It’s not just Friday. It’s just the way the entire first round (of the regular season) has gone. We feel like we let a couple of games get away from us that we could’ve had,” Terrones said. “We’re just trying to fight for the chance to get into the playoffs. That’s still on the table for us. I think that was their motivation to respond tonight the way they did. Holding them under 30 obviously is a great job for any high school team. I’m proud of that.”
Oestereich led LHS with 12 points. Dominic Ballesteros finished with 11 points. Both were the lone Braves to reach double figures.
Walker Grossi chipped in nine points for LHS. Stephen Espinoza added eight points. Ramirez and Cayabyab both had six points apiece. Morgan ended his evening with five points.
On the Pirates’ side, Nate Roberts was the lone SYHS player to score in double figures with 11 points. Ryan Rennick finished with six points while Merek Mercado and Ryan Dewitt each had four points apiece.
Terrones concluded he liked the fact he could turn to his bench early and not leave his starters out on the court for a long period of time; a mistake he admitted occurred in the last Braves’ game.
“We got guys in early. I think we made that mistake on Friday night – letting guys stay on the floor for too long. We tried to have the guys on the bench stay ready earlier. We were able to get all those guys in and performed. We weren’t forced to take them off of the court right away, so that was good to see,” Terrones said.
San Marcos 65, Lompoc 55
The effort was there throughout the night for the Braves against the defending Channel League champs on the road, but the Royals held on for the Friday night win at SMHS.
Collin Oestereich led LHS with 12 points.
Dos Pueblos 3, Cabrillo 0
In a game that was moved due to Tuesday's rainy weather, the Chargers handed CHS its eighth shutout loss of the season.
Dos Pueblos, which currently now owns the most C.L wins at four, scored all three of its goals in the first half.
Santa Ynez 0, Lompoc 0
The two teams that played for the top of the Los Padres League before its move to the Channel League ended its Tuesday game with no score.
This game also endured a schedule shift, as it was originally slated to be played at Huyck Stadium before getting moved to SYHS on Tuesday evening.
The Pirates remained undefeated in league at 3-0-2, while LHS is now 2-1-2 in the C.L.