SOUTH COUNTY — King City High and Gonzales High boys basketball teams began 2019 with losses at home and on the road.
King City lost to the Mission Division’s St. Francis Sharks for the second time this season, and the Spartans lost two non-league road games in Chico.
The Mustangs (3-8) let the game get away from them after the teams were tied in the fourth quarter. St. Francis got hot to defeat King City 56-42.
“We had a rough one against St. Francis,” said King City head coach Henry Ventura III. “All my guys played great team basketball and their effort was recognized by everyone present. The score was tied going into the fourth and we took the lead with few minutes in. My guys came out and fought and our progress is definitely showing. Estevan Garcia had 17 points, while Ashton Headley added nine. Last time we played them we were down by 28 at the half and lost by 26.”
Ventura added, “We play North Salinas on Wednesday and our first league game is on Friday against Oakwood.”
Ventura is in his first year as the varsity head coach after serving as the Bronco head coach last season. He is a graduate of Soledad High School and won consecutive scoring titles in the Mission Trail Athletic League.
Ventura has served as an assistant varsity coach at Soledad and has been the JV head coach at Greenfield High.
“Coaching in South County has been an awesome privilege over the years,” Ventura said. “Helping to develop these boys into respectable young men continues to be a reward. My guys here in King City are a family. They are learning to work hard, stay humble and take care of each other both on and off the court. Great things are developing here and I’m beyond proud of my guys and their progress.”
King City is a member of the Pacific Coast Athletic League’s Santa Lucia Division, along with Gonzales and Greenfield, and concludes the non-league schedule by playing North Salinas of the Cypress Division tonight in Salinas.
Gonzales (4-6) traveled to Chico last Friday and Saturday and lost games to Hamilton (69-45) and to Pierce (56-32). Against Hamilton, Isaiah Banuelos and Pablo Villasenor scored 17 points apiece to lead the Spartans’ scorers. In the game with Pierce, Xavier Cervantes led Gonzales with 17 points.
“We lost both games,” said Gonzales head coach Ruben Alvarado. “It was not a good scoring display this weekend up in Chico.”
Gonzales begins Santa Lucia Divisional games on the road. The Spartans travel to play Oakwood tonight and play the Marina Mariners on Friday at Cal State University Monterey Bay.