Westchester Tip Off Classic, Dec. 4 - Dec. 9
Los Angeles, California
Tournament winner: Westchester High School
Tournament MVP: Isaiah Jenkins, (Los Angeles/Westchester)
Tournament MOP: D.J. Gay (Los Angeles/Poly)
Sportsmanship award: Larry Drew (Woodland Hills, Calif./Taft)
What happened: Led by a stingy defense, and some timely shooting by its guards, Westchester overcame a three-point halftime deficit to defeat Taft 60-55 in front of a capacity crowd at Westchester High school.
Taft made a late run thanks to the suddenly hot shooting of 6-2 sophomore Justin Hawkins and the playmaking of 5-11 junior Larry Drew, but it wasn't enough as Westchester hit its free throws down the stretch. This year's version of the Westchester Comets is different from past talent-laden squads. This group relies on defense and a balanced scoring attack rather than overwhelming opponents with sheer athleticism.