It is always a good thing to show up when someone is watching.
That was the case for the Lathrop Spartans as they used the momentum provided by a raucous homecoming crowd to put together a solid performance in a 52-44 Valley Oak League win over visiting Sonora Friday.
The Spartans (3-8 VOL) shined behind a 20-point, five-rebound showing from point guard Robert Orantes and a 15-point, six-rebound performance from Isaiah Ellis.
“It was our win at homecoming, which was very nice,” Lathrop head coach Bill Slikker said. “We started kind of slow and it was nice to have that school atmosphere with the crowd behind us. We just needed that extra boost.
“The kids played their butts off and we earned it on the defensive end.”
The Spartans outscored Sonora in all but one of the four quarters.
Lathrop will try and make it back-to-back VOL wins when they play host to the Oakdale Mustangs Wednesday at 7:15 p.m.
Trans Valley League
Riverbank 65, Ripon 55
Rolaun Dunham scored 17 of his 29 points in the fourth quarter to give Riverbank all the separation it would need against the visiting Indians.
The Riverbank guard started the fourth quarter with back-to-back 3-pointers and then went 8-for-8 from the free-throw line as the Bruins improved to 8-1 in the Trans-Valley League. Riverbank outscored the Indians 21-11 over the final eight minutes.
“We went cold,” Ripon coach Rod Wright said. “It was a very competitive game the whole time – until the last three minutes. We made three errors and those little breaks … they took off. It was the Rolaun Dunham Show.”
Riverbank clamped down on point guard Cole Herrin, forcing Ripon’s supporting cast into a starring role. For the most part, they responded. Derek Hickman led Ripon with 15 points, Curtis Azevedo had 14 and Henk Gaalswyk 11.
Herrin had 8, as Ripon slipped to 4-5 in TVL play and 9-15 overall.
“Everybody who plays us knows Cole is our central weapon,” Wright said, “So they double and tell the others to do something.”
Ripon simply couldn’t do enough in the final three minutes.
Forced to foul, Wright and the Indians watched as Riverbank (7-1, 18-3) sealed the victory by knocking down all 11 of its free throws.
Ripon 56, Riverbank 33
Tia Siditkun led all scorers with 17, while Ruth Waters and Kelsey Alexander both chipped in with eight.
Ripon head coach George Contente praised the play of guard Hayley Fannin, who was responsible for holding Riverbank’s leading scorer well under her average of 16 points with four.
Ripon 42, Riverbank 20
Karisa Carlson led the way with 17 and teammates Jourdy Richter, and Zaire Davis added 10 as the Indians continued their impressive roll through the TVL with a convincing win over Riverbank Friday.