It’s been eight days since Bakersfield High needed a last-second 3-pointer to beat Ridgeview 51-49 on the road in the season opener.
That’s a lot of time in the practice gym for Drillers coach Greg Burt to work out the kinks of a new season, before the opening round of the Lloyd Williams/Kern Schools Shootout at North on Wednesday.
The Drillers beat Porterville-Monache, 65-32, in Wednesday's first round game. BHS (2-0) was led by Ronnie Stapp's 12 points and another 11 from Tahj Wright. Twelve different Drillers scored on the evening.
“We played better,” Burt said. “It’s a work in progress this time of the year. I just tell the kids that it doesn’t matter who we are playing, we have to prove it every time we go out.”
BHS plays Bakersfield Christian in the quarterfinals at 3:30 p.m. on Thursday.
Bakersfield Christian 57, Highland 22 - Led by a 17-point performance from sophomore Ben Yurosek, the Eagles defeated Highland in the opening round.
Erik Buetow added 14 points for the Eagles and A.J. Walton had six points and seven rebounds for BCHS (4-1).
Golden Valley 61, Paso Robles 60 - Golden Valley almost let an eight-point lead with less than a minute remaining get away, but the Bulldogs (3-2) held on and advanced to the quarterfinals to face Liberty in the quarterfinals.
Trevon Perry led Golden Valley with 21 points and Daniel Betker added 13.
Garces 46, Independence 33 - Without a senior on its roster, Garces overcame a sloppy start to hand Independence (4-1) its first loss of the season.
The Rams were led by an 11-point performance from freshman Izaac Martinez. Junior Sam Sakowski added nine points and freshman J.J. Uphold added eight and grabbed double-digit rebounds.
Lance Henderson led Independence with a game-high 13 points as junior guard Elijah Carter left the game in the third quarter with an ankle injury.
Ridgeview 81, Rosamond 47 - Senior guard L.J. Zeigler led Ridgeview with 18 points as the Wolf Pack eased into the quarterfinals with a blowout win over Rosamond.
Harold Hartdige scored 16 for Ridgeview (1-1) and Shawn Gementera added 10.
Alex Mattie scored a game-high 20 for the Roadrunners (0-5).
North 74, Kennedy 69 - Ty’mere Mitchell scored six of the final eight points for North as the Stars beat Kennedy, 74-69, for the program’s first win in its new gym.
Larry Atkerson and Shannon Ferguson both scored 20 points for North in Norm Brown’s first game as head coach. He took over the program after Matt Morin was fired Monday afternoon.
Kennedy (0-2), which received a 29-point performance from Denmark Cu, led by 10 points early in the third quarter.
Shafter 61, Tehachapi 41 - Josh Mejia led Shafter with 21 points and Jose Maldonado added 20 as the Generals beat Tehachapi in Wednesday's finale in North's old gym.