HS Boys Basketball: The 2019 Southwestern League Action Gets Underway Today

Defending Co-Champions Temecula Valley and Great Oak Face Off, Chaparral takes on Murrieta Valley & Vista Murrieta is Home to Murrieta Mesa

The 2019 Southwestern league season is upon us. Tonight, defending Co-Champions Temecula Valley and Great Oak face off against one another while. Vista Murrieta is at home against Murrieta Mesa and the third game scheduled is Chaparral at Murrieta Valley.

Temecula Valley is coming off a 20-8 season last year and was the Co-league Champion with Great Oak. The Golden Bears are a well coached team and have a record of 13-4. They are led by senior captains Kryztian Walton, Nate Jacobsen and junior point guard Garrett Schaefer. Temecula looks to win another Southwestern league title this year for Coach Kyle Armstrong.

Challenging the Bears will be Great Oak. The Wolfpack would also like to repeat as league Champions…this time, alone. The Wolfpack is 8-9 this season and ranked 15th in Division 2A in the latest CIF Southern Section Polls. Great Oak features 6’11” sophomore center Christian Bento. The Wolfpack has another sophomore, Jalen Punsalan who is a hot shooting guard.

Murrieta Mesa is ranked 11th in Division 2A. The Rams finished second in the Southwestern league last season behind Temecula Valley and Great Oak who tied for the title. Murrieta is 11-5 thus far this season. The Rams top player is senior Devine Fortune. Seniors Anthony Salas, Jonah Zandi and junior Cameron Rentie can also bring the heat. Salas recently set a record of nailing seven 3-pointers in a half.

Vista Murrieta finished the 2018 season with a record of 17-11 and placed fifth in league. The Broncos are 10-7 coming into league this season and coach Andy Rucker is always optimistic. Vista Murrieta has a lot of talented young players this season. Their number one player is senior Trevon Ridley who will carry the team this year.

Murrieta Valley has a brand new coach and style of basketball this season. The Nighthawks are now 9-5 under the leadership of their head coach Brian Wethers so far this season. The team is led by captains Anthony Montion (senior), and juniors Hudson Brower and Emilio Valencia. Senior Kyle Greeley can also score a lot of points for the Nighthawks.

Chaparral, under second year head coach Askia Geigle continues to build the Puma program. The Pumas were 7-20 last season and finished last in the Southwestern league with a 0-10 record. Chaprral is currently 10-6 and is led by seniors Jonathon Galan and Nathan Martin.

Photos by Scott Padgett