Los Alamitos Basketball

Los Al is on pace to its fifth straight 20-win season and to its fifth Sunset League title in six years with a 14-4 mark and 2-0 in league.

Russ May will admit that the 2007 version of his Los Alamitos basketball team is not as deep nor as talented as past editions.


The void left after the graduation of McDonald's all-American Landry Fields can't be filled, but the Griffins inside game is as strong as ever with six-foot-nine Clint Amberry, Corbin Moore, and Cameron Jones.


That trio returns from last season's CIF championship team which advanced to the state finals and finished at 29-5.


Los Al is on pace to its fifth straight 20-win season and to its fifth Sunset League title in six years with a 14-4 mark and 2-0 in league. They appear recovered from consecutive losses to Long Beach Jordan, Gahr, and Northwood and currently ride a six game winning streak.


Amberry is rounding into his all-CIF first team form, exhibited by his 36 point, 15 rebound output in a 104-87 win over Marina in the league opener. Jones is averaging 18 points and Moore adds a 12 point and 12 rebounds per game average.


Daryl Davis and Dillon Ratliff fill out May's starting five, however after that it gets down to linebackers and a starting quarterback.


"Amberry, Jones, and Moore will all be Division-I college player's," said May. "But you just don't replace guys like Landry. He was all-State and all-CIF and the heart and soul of our program." Fields is on scholarship at Stanford and has already worked himself into about 15 minutes per game.


"Landry was a late-bloomer who had a tremendous work ethic. His influence is still here and can be seen in the young player's in our program," said May, who graduated six other's from last season.


Along with leading Los Alamitos to its first CIF championship, Fields holds the Griffins single season scoring record.


"We're inexperienced at guard, but solid inside where we can rebound and score," said May. Most coaches in the Sunset League agree that it's Los Al and then a fight for second.


"They've got that group back from last year and have to be the favorite to win league again," said Marina coach Roger Holmes. "Everyone else is pretty much balanced."


May called Marina a team no wants to play. "They can put up 100 points before you know it. They are very scary," said May, who expects additional strong competition in league from Fountain Valley and Newport Harbor.


Realistically, without clinching the Sunset League crown, the Griffins record has made them a post season shoe-in. May said that down the road, Villa Park, Hawthorne, Etiwanda, and Santa Monica will all pose playoff problems. "I by no means am taking anything for granted," he said.


Villa Park pinned two losses on Los Al last season. The Griffins went on to win 15 straight, including a victory over Long Beach Jordan for the CIF-Div IIA title and a benchmark 64-51 win against Westchester in the SoCal D-I semifinals.


This season, the Griffins have defeated teams from Georgia, Kentuckey, Florida, and St. Francis de Sales of Columbus, Ohio. They also defeated defending CIF-DIIA champion Colony of Ontario.


Los Alamitos has an interesting non league contest this season when they travel to play Rancho Cucamonga Los Osos, whom they had to rally to beat 69-64 in the CIF quarterfinals last season.



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