HUGHSON — Hughson has been a house of horrors for Ripon in the past.
The Indians were able to exorcise some of those demons Tuesday, outscoring the Huskies 20-9 in the fourth quarter for a 73-58 victory.
“It’s a tough place to win, and our luck is never good going down to Hughson,” Ripon coach Rod Wright said. “Hughson is a good ball club. Even though they’re 0-2 in league they can beat some teams.”
Hughson (0-2, 11-4 overall) proved it can contend in the Trans-Valley League after knocking off reigning champion Ripon Christian 71-61 in overtime in the Oakdale Rotary Classic semifinals. But in Tuesday’s affair, the Huskies struggled with turnovers, particularly down the stretch.
Ripon’s Aaron Paschini was a big reason why, as he swiped nine steals and finished with 17 points. He and Cole Stevens (19 points, six rebounds, four assists) propelled the Indians (2-0, 13-4) in the fourth quarter with coast-to-coast baskets off of steals.
Kyle Sisk then made a key 3-pointer with 2:20 remaining to put them up by 11. Hughson had cut an eight-point deficit it to one before Ripon’s burst.
Noah Hernandez also fired 17 points. Anthony Sisk added eight points and nine rebounds, while his brother Kyle chipped in eight points, eight boards and three steals. Hughson’s Will Fiveash led all scorers with 23 points.
Ripon Christian 62, Escalon 57
RIPON — Ripon Christian (1-2, 10-6) rebounded from two straight close losses to start league but struggled to put away the upset-minded Cougars (0-3, 3-13).
The Knights appeared to be on their way to a blowout win after leading 28-13 in the first quarter but were outscored 17-8 in the second.
Zach Cortright paced RC with 19 points, Andrew Vander Weide had 13 and Ty Beidleman 11. Tommy Pangan erupted for 22 points to lead Escalon.
Ripon 57, Hughson 27
RIPON — Freshman point guard Reina Sausedo spearheaded the Indians (2-0, 8-7) with 17 points, 10 rebounds and five assists.
Ripon shot out to an 18-5 lead and limited Hughson (0-2, 5-12) to six or less points in all but three quarters. Savannah Clark contributed eight points and 12 rebounds. Mia Van Lewen had eight points and eight boards. The Indians totaled 50 rebounds.
“We started the game playing good, fundamental basketball,” Ripon coach Rick Inderbitzin said. “We played great defense, ran the break and did a great job passing the basketball on offense.”
Ripon Christian 38
ESCALON — Ripon Christian (1-2, 6-10) never trailed but managed to stay within striking distance throughout.
Freshman Morgan Van Elderen, recently promoted from the sophomore team, tallied 16 points to lead the Knights. Elizabeth Weststeyn pumped in nine points while grabbing 13 rebounds. Kelly Engle contributed eight points, and Renae Heida added seven points and 17 rebounds.
Haley Boyd and Jenelle Anderson anchored Escalon (2-1, 10-6) with 11 and 10 points, respectively.
Ripon Christian 40
ESCALON — The Knights couldn’t keep up with Escalon despite Ariel Vander Woude’s game-high 22 points and 13 rebounds. Sarah Brown netted 11 points and was 7 of 8 from the free-throw line.
Hughson 50, Ripon 40
RIPON —Mia Culver fired 24 points for Ripon, while Sydney Vernon had eight.
Ripon 63, Hughson 35
HUGHSON — Troy Brogan and Nico Ilardi shared high-point honors for the Indians with 10 apiece while Ripon ran its season record to 14-1.
Ryan Barner added nine points with Danny Hernandez and Aiden Benzinger chipping in eight points each. Brogan also grabbed eight rebounds, and Ilardi dished out five assists.