SALINAS VALLEY — All four South Monterey County high schools participated in last weekend’s Glenn Cooper Frosh-Soph Boys Basketball Tournament at the Roger Fernando Gym in Gonzales.
The tournament featured eight teams and is named after former teacher and head basketball coach Glenn Cooper.
Salinas was represented by North Salinas and Rancho San Juan, while Oakwood made the trip from Gilroy and Monterey High traveled from the Peninsula. King City, Greenfield, Soledad and host Gonzales filled out the bracket.
The Monterey Toreadores went 3-0 and captured the team title with a 69-32 victory on Saturday over the Soledad Aztecs.
Andre Gonzalez was the Soledad leading scorer in the preliminary games against Rancho San Juan (40-20) and Gonzales (47-20).
“I’m really proud of the guys and how they played hard against all three of their opponents, despite not having three key players (two starters),” said Soledad coach Louis Leon. “Monterey is such a talented team with great players, and I’m especially proud with how tough my guys played against the type of competition.”
King City placed third and finished the tournament with a 59-43 win over Gonzales. Leading scorer for the Ponies team was Adrian Garcia, who averaged 20 points per game. Jonathan De La Paz scored 14 points per game. The Ponies were coached by varsity head coach Henry Ventura III.
King City beat North Salinas, 52-37, in their first game last Thursday, and lost 65-52 to Monterey in their second game to set up the match for third place with Gonzales.
Gonzales began play with an overtime victory over the Greenfield Bruins to reach the winners bracket before the loss to Soledad.
“Jaden Vasquez scored 30 points in the 57-53 win over Greenfield,” said Gonzales coach Felix Maturino. “Greenfield scored with two seconds left in regulation, then we outscored them in overtime. In the Soledad game, Tony Garcia, a guy who had never played organized basketball before, played some great defense for us, and Josh Valdez led us in scoring with 13 points. In the final game with King City, Adrian Perez scored 19 points, while Jaden Vasquez finished with four points. Abel Villegas, Diego Garcia and Ozzie Arreguin also played well in all three games.”
Greenfield coach Gonzalo Garcia praised his Bruins team for the efforts in the three-day tournament.
“My boys had a chance to win our first two games,” Garcia said. “We played in overtime in the loss to Gonzales and lost in a buzzer-beater to Rancho San Juan.”