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Titans Start Off Rio Hondo League Play 3-1

Michael Shahan takes an inbound pass during a recent game.  Photo courtesy of the San Marino Tribune.

Michael Shahan takes an inbound pass during a recent game. Photo courtesy of the San Marino Tribune.

Will Slocum

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 San Marino High School Titans boys’ varsity basketball team lost to the San Dimas Saints Saturday by a score of 64-61 on the road in a non conference game. 

The Saints had a solid first quarter where they outscored the Titans 12-8. San Marino continued to fight in the second frame by scoring 14 points to make the score 26-22 at halftime. Down the stretch, the Titans were hurt by turnovers and couldn’t  reach the Saints.

It was the third game that starting guard Michael Baldocchi was not in uniform due to injury. Will Steele has stepped in from the bench.

Last Friday, San Marino improved their conference record to 3-1 by beating the Monrovia Wildcats 67-61, on the road.

The Wildcats had aggressive shooting from the top of the key. San Marino also shot well by scoring 16 field goals in the first half from different ranges. The Titans lead 35-34 at halftime.

Azinge sank a three pointer to give San Marino the lead and momentum with about four minutes left. The Titans finished it off by sinking clutch free throws to hold on and win 67-61.

Head coach Mihail Papadopulos  said, “Every game in the Rio Hondo League this season is going to be a dog fight and it will come down to the team that can execute down the stretch and can handle the intensity. Tonight it was good to feel that grit again and good to see our boys figure out how to win a game.”

Andrew Quach had 23 points, while Azinge and Michael Shahan had 18 and 15 points, respectively.

Before that, San Marino lost to the Blair Vikings on the road, 79-58 on January 17.

Blair found success in the fist half with hitting shots and having aggressive presses that trapped San Marino on offense. It caused San Marino to execute poorly and get few shots off. This equated to the Vikings leading 44-24 at halftime.

The Titans played better in the second half by having fewer mistakes. Although, San Marino couldn’t take momentum away from the Vikings as they went on to win 79-58.

The game before, San Marino defeated the Temple City Rams at home, 71-64, on January 13.

The Rams started off by making 6 three pointers in the first quarter. San Marino also shot well early and had solid rebounding from Baldochi (the most recent contest he played in.) San Marino lead 33-28 at halftime.

The Titans went on to win by making turnovers, having breaks, great shooting by Nate Wang and rebounding well.

Azinge had a great game with 26 points and 4 rebounds. Shahan and Wang  helped with 13 points each. Quach had 8 points while Will Steele netted 6. Baldochi had 7 rebounds and 5 points.

Prior to that, San Marino started conference play on January 10 by defeating the South Pasadena Tigers at home, 73-62.

The Tigers made lots of 3 point shots early although San Marino was able to keep of the pace and had the game tied at halftime.

Shahan said, “I felt that our physicality really helped us. The fact that we didn’t back down even though they hit so many threes really tired them out and we were able to come out on top.”

San Marino went on to win 73-62. Azinge had 31 points while  Quach contributed with 15. Shahan and Wang played solidly where they netted 10 and 9 points respectively.

The next game for San Marino is today where they will take on La Canada at home. On Friday, the Titans will play Temple City again with it being on the road this time.

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Titans Start Off Rio Hondo League Play 3-1