SAN LUIS OBISPO — This past weekend the Greyhounds men’s basketball team began its play in the Harding Invitational basketball tournament at Morro Bay and San Luis Obispo High Schools. The tournament took place Thursday through Saturday with 16 teams on the bracket.
There were several local schools competing in the tournament such as Pioneer Valley, Nipomo, and Lompoc, which were joined by schools from out of the area such as
The Greyhounds opened the tournament with a game against South Bakersfield. It was a perfect early season game for Atascadero in that it had a little bit of everything.
The game started out really close with both teams trying to establish an identity.
In the second quarter an official who seemed to be trying to send a message that his authority would not be questioned abruptly ejected Levi Williams and issued the player two technical fouls.
The Greyhounds led the Rebels 30-22 at the halfway point but emerged in the second half as a completely different team. Atascadero opened the second half on a 9-0 run in which they recorded two steals and multiple offensive rebounds.
“The first half we hurried too much, too much dribbling,” Atascadero Head Coach Fred Price said. “We were trying to take quick shots and weren't utilizing our size. The second half I thought we had a little better pace and they were switching screens so when we were moving it they would switch and we would have advantages. We would put up a shot and a lot of times our bigs were up against their guards and we could get the rebound and put it back.”
One of those Atascadero bigs took over at the end of the third quarter. With their leading scorer and rebounder Kyler Warren on the bench getting a breather, Cade VanAllen made play after play to extend the Greyhounds lead until the outcome was all but a certainty. VanAllen must have grabbed close to four offensive rebounds in consecutive possession and kept the ball high with his 6-foot, 7-inch wingspan to lay it in over the smaller defenders.
“I just got more physical because they got more physical,” VanAllen said. “I crashed the boards hard and got those rebounds and putbacks.”
Atascadero won the game 71-36. Warren finished with 15 points 12 rebounds and two assists and VanAllen added 11 points and 10 rebounds.
The Greyhounds played three more games over the weekend, winning one more and losing two. In their second game of the tournament, they faced Central High and fell 77-40. Atascadero couldn't stop
In their third game, the Hounds played Garces High School and picked up their second win of the tournament, 58-37. Warren finished the game with 19 points, 14 rebounds and three assists and VanAllen again made his presence felt adding 14 points and 10 rebounds.
In their fourth and final game, Atascadero fell to Bakersfield Christian 59-43. Warren was the only Hound in double figures, scoring 17 points to go with 11 boards and two assists. Avden Bremer also added nine points.