Weston Ranch head coach Chris Teevan got a shot at redemption Saturday morning.
Teevan got a rematch against his former high school basketball coach Mike Vander Molen and his Gregori squad, who defeated the Cougars for the first time Dec. 5 at the Modesto City Classic.
Teevan, who used to play for coach Vander Molen at Beyer High and graduated in 2006, helped guide Weston Ranch (4-6) to a 68-65 victory over Gregori at the Modesto Christian Holiday Hoop Classic.
“I got a little payback,” Teevan said half-jokingly.
Sophomore standout Jaelen Ragsdale finished with a game-high 21 points and hit two free throws that made up the final score before Gregori (6-6) missed a desperation half-court shot at the buzzer.
Fellow sophomore guard Jerico Gonzales came up with 15 points, including nine in the final quarter.
“Those sophomores made a lot of big plays in the fourth quarter,” Teevan said. “Gonzales came up big. He has been on and off. He hit four 3s, and he can do a lot of that. He provides secondary ball-handling besides Jaelen, and if we can get him going like that, it just makes us that much better.”
Weston Ranch has another shooter in junior Jazz Swanson, who finished with 11 points. Swanson is a transfer who Teevan says moved to Weston Ranch from Lancaster and is now a contributing factor.
“Jazz is a three-point shooter,” Teevan said. “And he has no conscious when he shoots. He’s been a pleasant surprise for us. He’s still learning the system, but he rebounds very well and he shoots the 3. With him, Ragsdale and (Gonzales) on the court, we shoot the ball pretty darn good.
“We didn’t have (Jordan) Tauga, he didn’t play. We still rebounded really well even though we were 1-2 in this tournament, we’re getting more physical.”
J’Son Moten had eight points while Marcus Moore and Erron Duncan each chipped in four. Duncan also made two go-ahead free throws with 20 seconds left in regulation that broke a 63-63 knot.
Weston Ranch will finish at the Modesto Christian tourney today at 11 a.m. against 9-2 Turlock. The Cougars will host St. Mary’s of Stockton Thursday night at 7 p.m. in their final preseason action before starting Valley Oak League play on Jan. 7, at home against Sonora.
Turlock 56, Ripon 44
The Indians (1-11) dropped their fifth straight tournament matchup against the Division I Bulldogs, who jumped out to a 19-2 advantage after the first quarter. Freshman Cole Stevens led with a game-high 13 points while senior Chase DePrue dropped nine at the Crusader gym.
Junior Massimo Robbins tallied eight and Michael Morris nine. Ryan Fugit (four) and Derek Hickman (three) rounded out the total for Ripon, who trailed 37-19 at the break. The Indians trailed by 22 after three quarters and closed on a 17-7 run. Turlock (9-2) had 12 of its 13 players reach the scoring tab and were led by 6-7 senior Kenny Fraser’s 12 points.
Ripon and Gregori will play for 15th place at 9:30 a.m. today at Modesto Christian.
Oakdale Rotary Classic
Ripon Christian 59
The Knights (8-3) came up short in the tournament championship and junior Sean Broker made the All-Tournament team after leading Ripon Christian with 21 points on 53% shooting in the final.
Ripon Christian lost every quarter and trailed by seven at halftime against 9-4 Pitman. The Knights also received 16 points from sophomore Travis Vander Molen and 10 from Austin Alger. Danny Vander Molen (four), Andrew Manes (three) and Jake Schollenberg (three) all chipped in as well.
Ripon Christian is scheduled to play at Waterford on Friday for the Southern League opener.