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Eagles' balanced scoring, tough defense lead to 60-38 win over Center

By: Matt Long, Sports Editor
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Vista was badly in need of a win following four straight losses and they got it.
 
The Eagles defeated Center, 60-38, Friday in the second round of the Folsom-Vista Tournament and will play in the consolation game at 3 p.m. Saturday at Folsom High.
 
“We needed this,” Vista coach Matt von Tillow said. “Even though we got out to a decent lead, we weren’t playing that well. We were selfish and playing one-on-one and our shots were going in. As good as we played in the first quarter, we were equally as bad in the second. In the second half we kept the ball moving and in the first four minutes all five of our guys scored. We’re a lot tougher to defend when we play like that and it’s a lot more fun for the guys.”
 
Vista jumped out a 9-0 lead early in the first quarter on three, three-pointers by Drew McPherson in the first 88 seconds of the game. Oddly enough, it was all the points McPherson would score in the game.
 
Center played the Eagles relatively even the rest of the half, as Vista outscored them 12-9. In the second half, however, the Eagles played their best basketball, particularly in the third quarter when they outscored the Cougars 20-7. Four players made baskets in the quarter and five scored; Ian MacLachlan scoring seven of his 12 points. Jake Duenkel added six points in the quarter.
 
“Our adjustment at half was to be more unselfish with the ball and that was key,” Duenkel said. “We also played good defense on their big men.”
Vista played good defense throughout the game, as they forced several turnovers off their press and many more in the half-court defense. Overall, Center committed 22 turnovers and made only 14 shots from the field.
 
“I see us getting better,” Duenkel said. “We need to improve in closing out games and learning how to win. We will get better.”
 
Vista’s win was a nice rebound from the previous night when the Eagles lost to Del Campo in overtime, 77-76, in their tournament opener.
“It was a very difficult loss,” von Tillow said. “It was an emotional game and we had lots of chances to win and we didn’t. This was a good bounce-back game.”
 
Duenkel led the Eagles with 13 points, while MacLachlan scored 12 and Mehran Amin finished with 11.