Arabs fall in first round of own tournament
Imperial Valley College's Josue Mulamba shoots over Los Angeles Harbor defenders during the first day of IVC¿s Holiday Classic on Wednesday at IVC. (ERIC MILLER)
The 6-foot Jones lifted Los Angeles Harbor to a 62-60 victory Wednesday in the opening round of the fourth IVC Holiday Classic at the DePaoli Sports Complex.
Jones drove from the right wing into the lane, where he was confronted by 6-foot-10 Josue Mulamba, who stretched his arms skyward and held his position to avoid committing a foul. Jones lofted the ball over Mulamba with his right hand and it banked into the basket at the buzzer.
“The guy (Jones) made one heck of a shot, a runner over Josh,” Arabs coach Tyson Aye said.
The Arabs (9-3), ranked ninth in Southern California and 17th in the state, had a six-game winning streak snapped. They lost to a quality team in the Seahawks (9-3), who are ranked 13th in Southern California.
Imperial Valley plays the College of the Desert at 3 today in the consolation bracket. Harbor advances to the semifinals, playing Fullerton (2-10).
The Arabs played without leading scorer Brandon Newman, who averages 18.1 points per game. He was tending to a family emergency in Atlanta.
Imperial Valley trailed 56-42 with 4 minutes, 29 seconds remaining.
The Arabs went into a full-court press, creating turnovers and open-court shooting opportunities.
Melvin Cook’s 3-pointer cut Harbor’s lead to 56-47 with 3:10 remaining and his 3-pointer from the corner trimmed the deficit to 58-50 at 2:01.
Darius Singletary’s two free throws at 1:37 moved IVC to within six.
IVC forced the Seahawks into a turnover, a pass that went to Tyler Turner under the basket and he scored to make it 58-54. Turner’s free throw got IVC to 58-55 with 1:07 left.
Harbor’s Jamal Washington scored on a baseline drive and the Arabs were behind by five, 60-55.
Mulamba scored on a two-handed stuff with 27 seconds left. With the shot clock turned off, IVC fouled Vinay Parmar. He missed the front end of a one-on-one with 25 seconds left.
Turner made a 3-pointer from the wing to tie it, 60-60, with 13 seconds left.
Jones took the in-bounds pass and dribbled into the front court, using up much of the time. They he burst to the basket and launched his game-winning shot.
“Obviously, I’m disappointed we lost, but I’m not disappointed with the way the guys finished the game,” Aye said. “I’m proud they did every single thing we asked in the last four minutes and gave themselves a chance at a great comeback win and fell short.”
Mulamba had 15 points and 13 rebounds for the Arabs.
In other tournament games, San Bernardino Valley defeated Miramar 68-63, Glendale, Ariz., defeated Cuyamaca, 77-60, and Fullerton defeated the College of the Desert, 88-84.