Despite entering the playoffs as one of the lowest-ranked teams, the Mayfair boys basketball team picked up their second win of the CIF Southern Section Division 1A playoffs with a huge 86-63 second-round victory over a much bigger Redlands East Valley Wildcat team.
With four players at 6 feet 5 inches or taller, the Wildcats held a prominent size advantage. The Monsoons did not let that bother them as they frustrated the Wildcats and their star, Kim Aiken, with pressure defense and relentless rebounding.
“We wanted to push the tempo,” said Mayfair coach Tony Davis. “We wanted to make the guards work and make it hard to get it into the bigs. We also fought on the boards and came out and set the tone.”
While taking care of the defensive end, the Monsoons hit seven first half three-pointers en route to a 45-29 halftime lead. Kameron Small and Kyle Small each hit two in the second quarter while Josh Christopher scored 14 first half points.
“They got the ball moving and were stepping into rhythm,” said Davis. “We did a great job executing against their defense.”
Mayfair cooled off in the third quarter offensively, but kept the intensity up. Darrius Turpin and Michael Ofoegbu crashed the board hard offensively to pick up key offensive rebounds and kept the Wildcats off the boards on the other end.
Aiken would get six quick points to spark a 10-4 run to open the fourth quarter and cut the Monsoon lead to 10, but a put-back by Michael Ofoegbu and a 3-pointer by Caleb Christopher put Mayfair up 69-54. Mayfair closed the game on a 22-9 run to secure the win.
Aiken finished the game with a team-high 16 points, well below his season average of 25 points per game.
“We paid a lot of attention to him,” Davis said. “We didn’t want him to get out to a fast start and we had to keep him off the boards.”
Mykale Williams was the only other Wildcat in double figures with 10 points.
Caleb Christopher finished with a team high 20 points. Josh Christopher added 18 points for the Monsoons, 14 of which came in the first half.
Mayfair (18-10) will travel to Peninsula on Tuesday for a quarterfinal matchup.
Watch the highlight video here: Mayfair vs. REV Boys Basketball