Dons finish off Burroughs, finish fifth

Santa Barbara’s boys basketball team has had an uncertain preseason to wade its way through, with key players missing and a lack of bodies at practice.

But as a credit to the Dons, they’ll ring in 2009 at an even 7-7 and with some momentum after beating a strong Burroughs squad 70-57 to finish fifth in the Holiday Classic.

“I’m encouraged,” said do-it-all standout Spencer Thomas, who racked up 18 points. “We won the last two games by considerable amounts… I think we have the base to do really well.”

Roberto Nelson scored a game-high 19 for the Dons, who trailed 32-25 at the half but rallied back and got into a shootout with the Indians in the fourth quarter. Nelson and Kyle Leonard (10 points) each hit a pair of treys in the quarter while Burroughs had three of its own.

“I thought we were tested early and we stayed together. This was probably our best poise game as far as not finger-pointing,” said Hantgin. “Roberto played well and didn’t need too many shots to do it, and everybody chipped in off of the bench.”

With the league-opener against Ventura coming up quickly on January 9th, the boost from the strong tourney performance will certainly be useful.

“I’m looking forward to practice, and I’m looking to take the confidence from these last to games into league,” said Hantgin. “Anybody can win it.”

SANTA BARBARA 70, BURROUGHS 57

SANTA BARBARA — Thomas 18, Uribe 9, Nelson 19, Leonard 10, Aronson 2, Maldonado 10, Padilla 2. Totals 20 12-18 70.

BURROUGHS — Hart 9, Safariams 2, Ward 5, Morris 9, McQuown 4, Blocker 8, Washington 5, VanDam 4, Nwachie 12. Totals 22 4-6 57.

Santa Barbara…9  16  21  24 — 70

Burroughs……17  15  12  13 — 57

3-point goals — SB 10 (Uribe 3, Nelson 3, Leonard 2, Maldonado 2), B 9.

Total fouls — SB 16, B 20.

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