Highlanders win Piedmont Invitational The Piedmont High boys basketball team edged Bentley 63-61 to win the championship game of the Piedmont Invitational on Dec. 21. Sean Rodriguez was named the tournaments' Most Valuable Player after scoring 20 points and passing for five assists in the championship game. Jordan Torio, who scored a team-high 22 points in the championship game, was named all-tournament, as was teammates Joseph Powell and Chris Fetterolf. The Highlanders improved to 8-1 with the victory.
Alameda girls beat Dublin in rematch The Alameda High girls basketball team defeated Dublin 60-56 on Sept. 21 in a rematch of a North Coast Section Division II girls playoff quarterfinal game last season, which Dublin won 54-50. In this season's game, the Hornets had four double-figure scorers, led by DeJa Johnson-Ford with 16 points. She also produced seven rebounds and four steals. Lisa Bertholdt had a double-double with 14 points and 10 rebounds, and teammate Tori McGovern also had 14 points. Tatianna Kelly added 13 points for the Hornets, who improved to 8-2 with the victory.
Berkeley star headed to Fresno State Berkeley High football star Michael Lazarus made an oral commitment to Fresno State on Dec. 18. Lazarus, ranked as a three-star inside linebacker by rivals.com, said that he seriously considered Arizona State before choosing the Bulldogs. He had 17 sacks in the Yellowjackets' 10-game season this year, according to Berkeley coach James Barnes.
-- Phil Jensen
On deck West Coast Jamboree, girls basketball, Dec. 27, TBA -- Among the local teams with opening-round games on Dec. 27 are Berkeley (vs. St. Mary's-Stockton in the Platinum Division at Las Positas College at 2 p.m.), Oakland Tech (vs. Bishop Manogue-Reno in the Diamond Division at Deer Valley at 2 p.m.), Encinal (vs. Sheldon-Sacramento in the Coral Division at Ygnacio Valley at 12:30 p.m.), Head-Royce (vs. St. Bernard in the Jade Division at Alhambra at 5 p.m.) and Albany (vs. Berean Christian in the Agate Division at Cornerstone Christian at 12:30 p.m.).
Stars of the week Ivan Rabb, Bishop O'Dowd boys basketball -- Rabb scored 24 points, grabbed 21 rebounds and blocked five shots in the Dragons' 63-59 overtime loss to Mater Dei-Santa Ana at the Tarkanian Classic in Las Vegas on Dec. 21. Sean Rodriguez, Piedmont boys basketball -- Rodriguez was named Most Valuable Player of the Piedmont Invitational after scoring 20 points and passing for five assists in the Highlanders' 63-61 win over Bentley in the championship game on Dec. 21. Lisa Bertholdt, Alameda girls basketball -- Bertholdt produced a double-double with 14 points and 10 rebounds in the Hornets' 60-56 victory over Dublin on Dec. 21. Jovontae Carleton, El Cerrito boys basketball -- Carleton scored 15 points in the Gauchos' 57-51 victory over Newark Memorial on Dec. 19, then produced a game-high 19 points, eight rebounds, five assists and five steals in El Cerrito's 70-50 win over McClymonds in the De Anza Showcase on Dec. 21. Destiny Kelly, Encinal girls basketball -- Kelly scored a game-high 29 points, and also grabbed 12 rebounds and blocked three shots in the Jets' 56-37 victory over Sir Francis Drake on Dec. 20. Temidayo Yussuf, St. Joseph Notre Dame boys basketball -- Yussuf scored a team-high 16 points in the Pilots' 53-36 loss to Archbishop Riordan-San Francisco at the Catholic School Winter Classic at Cal State East Bay on Dec. 21.