STOCKTON — Weston Ranch scrapped its way to another home victory Tuesday, edging out Interstate 5 rivals Lathrop, 50-47.
“We don’t win the pretty games,” said Weston Ranch coach Chris Teevan following the second Valley Oak League clash between both teams in nearly two weeks.
Lathrop (4-4 VOL, 12-9) won the previous go-around 67-59 after the Cougars claimed the first 14 in the head-to-head series.
“We struggled against them the last time,” Spartans coach Craig Ward said.
In a contest that four ties and five lead changes, Weston Ranch (4-4 VOL, 12-9) scored the go-ahead shot at 2:17 mark of the fourth quarter.
Senior guard Chedrick Ordonez buried a 3 from the perimeter to give his team a 47-45 edge. Seconds later, freshman forward Gavin Wilburn drove the lane for two of his 15 points. He also had nine rebounds and two steals.
A put-back by Anthony Blase kept the Spartans close. From there, they resorted to fouling as the Cougars looked to milk the clock in that final minute.
Sophomore forward Raul Melgarejo hit one of his two free throws, forcing Lathrop to try a desperation trey.
Rahim Kelly all but secured the win by coming up with the rebound as precious seconds ticked away.
“These last few games, we’ve struggled on offense,” Ward said.
Weston Ranch, by contrast, came out strong.
Senior guard Daniel Elendu and Wilburn paced the Cougars to an 18-11 first-quarter lead. Elendu netted 13 of his game-high 19 points in that span.
Lathrop came out strong in the second, forcing several turnovers into buckets.
Isaiah Ward delivered on a put-back shot followed by a drive to the hoop and Junior Ballard turned a steal into a quick basket during a 14-4 run.
Adonis Payton momentarily put the Spartans ahead with a pair of turnaround jumpers.
Weston Ranch trailed 27-26 at the half.
The tempo of the game seesawed throughout most of the second half.
The Cougars turned to their defense. “We knew what we had to do to get the stops,” said Elendu, who often teamed up with freshman guard Titus Haley in applying the press.
Payton led Lathrop in scoring with 10 points. Ballard and Idowu Olaleye both had six.
Ordonez chipped in with 11 for Weston Ranch.
Sierra 68, Kimball 58
Matthew Oli fired 23 points and made five 3-pointers for visiting Kimball (1-7, 6-16), but it wasn’t enough to keep up with the more balanced Timberwolves (4-4, 13-7).
Jamille Grady led the winning team with 17 points and four 3s. Victor Elijah added 16 points, sophomore Eduardo Jasso had 10 and Bikram Thiara chipped in eight.
Oakdale 69, East Union 65
OAKDALE — The Mustangs (1-7, 4-18) prevailed after two overtime periods to claim their first VOL win in nearly two years. Their last league victory came on Feb. 11, 2015 against Lathrop, 62-55.
“We just came out with no energy and were careless with the ball,” East Union coach Ryan Tarr said. “They just wanted it more. They outworked us and outplayed us. We didn’t deserve to win tonight.”
The Lancers (5-3, 13-8) wasted a 37-point explosion from Gyse Hulsebosch. Blake Greenlee contributed 14 points.
Nick Woody turned in 18 points to lead Oakdale’s stunning win.