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RC locks up outright TVL title after dusting Riverbank with 28-2 run
Riverbank-Ripon Christian boys basketball
Ripon Christian’s Derek Van Elderen (2) attempts the off-balance layup while splitting the Riverbank defense of Cristian Fuentes (2), Ethan Moreno (11) and Rolando Bazan (5). GARY JENSEN/

The Ripon Christian Knights wrapped up another Trans-Valley League title.

It was their third straight crown which occurred Friday following a 55-34 victory over visiting Riverbank.

But it took some work.

RC (10-0, 18-7) went on a 28-2 run after trailing by three midway through the third.

"We worried at that point," said RC coach Mark Hofman said.

The game featured five ties and five lead changes, with the Bruins (6-4, 13-12) coming out with plenty of energy and fight, forcing RC to take tough shots while forcing turnovers.

Hofman liken this battle to that of a week ago against Escalon. The Knights took care of business by closing out the game with a strong run.

Trailing 25-21 at the half, Riverbank opened the third with Diego Felix delivering on a pair of runners including one to knot the game at 27-27.

Erick Jimenez momentarily put the Bruins up by nailing a 3-pointer.

From there, RC caught fire.

Luke Crivello tied the game up with a 3, Derek Van Elderen, Eli Terpstra, Jace Beidleman, and Trey Fasani followed suit on the offensive side.

Defensively, the Knights wore down Riverbank, which failed to convert of its 3-point tries.

"Our half-court defensive is real good," Hofman added.

RC closed out the third with Cirvello, who finished with 11 points, four boards, and a steal, hitting a 3 while giving his team a 37-30 lead.

Terpsma took over in the fourth, hitting eight of his game-high 15 points in the quarter. He also had eight rebounds, a block, and a steal.

Beidleman capped off the Knights' run of 15 unanswered points by cashing in on a four-point play. He was fouled after nailing a 3.

Beidleman, all told, had eight points and six boards. Van Elderen and Fasani also chipped in with eight.

Felix led Riverbank with 10 points. Rolando Bazan hit for nine points and came away with eight rebounds and four steals.

The Bruins hung with RC, trailing 11-10 after the opening quarter, and managed to keep within striking distance for nearly three quarters.

In the end, the night belonged to the Knights.