West Valley High School hosted its 22nd annual tournament, won by Moreno Valley’s Valley View Eagles
■ Corey Evan / Reporter
From tipoff to the final buzzer, every second is exciting in basketball. Being one of the quickest-paced sports in the world, it’s a natural choice for girls looking to get ahead in life. So when 12 teams took to the court at West Valley High School for its 22nd annual Mustang Tip-Off Tournament, it was a week not to be missed.
Taking part in the tournament alongside the Mustangs were the Temecula Great Oak Wolves, Adelanto Saints, San Jacinto Tigers, Yucca Valley Trojans, Yucaipa Thunderbirds, Grand Terrace Titans, Twentynine Palms Wildcats, Aquinas Falcons, Valley View Eagles, Chaparral Pumas and the Redlands East Valley Wildcats.
From Monday, Nov. 27 to Friday, Dec. 1, these girls from across Southern California played their hearts out.
West Valley did not win any of their games, losing 57-35 against Chaparral, 79-46 against Redlands East Valley, 36-26 against Grand Terrace and 49-37 against Aquinas.
In tournament play, Valley View took the first place trophy from Great Oak 49-36 and the Eagles’ head coach Leigh Ann Long received the coach’s award, a special plaque, to hang in her office for her students to see.
Great Oak’s all-tournament player was Ashley Waltz. Valley View had two all-tournament players: Amani Moxley and Jalen Long. Tournament MVP went to Valley View’s Jordyn Jackson.
The tournament was coordinated by West Valley Athletics Director Kathleen Alvarez, with the help of West Valley’s Building Assets Reducing Risk (BARR) program coordinator, Amber Bohac. The BARR program works with freshmen to address life issues and how they affect schoolwork.
“It’s been a great success. Overall it’s great experience for our team, because they get to see all the different types of talent that’s out there,” said Bohac, who is also assistant to Alvarez. “And it’s a really good learning experience for them to watch other basketball players.”
Based on this tournament, West Valley coach Brandon Jones knows his girls have their work cut out for them.
“We’re gelling, we’re fresh, we’re young,” he said. “I’m new, first year here as the head coach for the girls. I told the girls earlier we’re still trying to find the jelly for the bread.”
On that note, West Valley had better get peanut-buttered up for season play; their next match is at Riverside’s Norte Vista High against the Lady Braves tonight at 6 p.m. Can the Mustangs brave this match? Make your way to Norte Vista if you can to find out!