By Zach Cavanagh
SAN JUAN CAPISTRANO – Over the last few seasons in the Sea View League, the San Juan Hills boys basketball team had a hold over Dana Hills.
The Stallions had won eight in a row over the Dolphins dating back to 2019 and 12 of the last 13 going back to 2017, including a five-point win in the title game of the Santa Ana Tournament just two weeks ago.
Dana Hills had a shot at redemption back at San Juan Hills High, and thanks to another school-record performance from the “Haugh-fense,” the Dolphins got back in the win column.
Collin Haugh scored a school-record 41 points for the second time this season with five 3-pointers, as Dana Hills shot its way to a halftime lead and pulled away in the fourth quarter over San Juan Hills, 86-60, on Thursday, Dec. 8, in a San Juan Invitational Shootout game.
“This year, we took the reins off of him,” Dana Hills coach Tom Desiano said of Haugh, “and he’s shown that he can be one of the best players in the county, and certainly one of the best players we’ve had. He’s only a sophomore, but he plays with such a high degree of confidence.”
Haugh put Dana Hills (7-3) on top with his third 3-pointer of the second quarter, and junior Dennis Powers nailed two of his four 3-pointers to take the Dolphins into halftime with a five-point lead over San Juan Hills (7-4). Dana Hills hit 12 3-point shots in the game to the Stallions’ six.
“Obviously, I was feeling pretty good. Everything was just working,” said Haugh, who didn’t miss a shot in the first half for 18 points. “We’re just running up and down. (Desiano is) allowing us play at a fast pace. This year we’re getting to do everything we want to (offensively). It’s great.”
San Juan Hills dictated the early flow as Rylan Kies slashed through the middle of the Dana Hills defense for 13 points in the first half. However, as the Dolphins got out and running, Dana Hills then outpaced the Stallions through the final three quarters.
San Juan Hills could only close the gap to five points in the third quarter, and Dana Hills closed out the game on a 21-4 run.
Kies finished with 19 points, and Nathan Brosch scored 16 points for San Juan Hills.
In addition to Haugh’s 41 points, Powers and senior Cole Davison each scored 14 points for Dana Hills.
Haugh also scored a school-record 41 points in the season-opener over Calvary Chapel, and the sophomore sharpshooter scored 39 points in a win over Costa Mesa.
Both Dana Hills and San Juan Hills close out the San Juan Invitational Shootout on Saturday, Dec. 10. The Stallions host El Toro, and the Dolphins take on Godinez at Capistrano Valley Christian.
Zach Cavanagh is the sports editor for Picket Fence Media. Zach is a California Journalism Award winner and has covered sports in Orange County since 2013. Follow him on Twitter and Instagram @ZachCav and follow our sports coverage on Twitter @SouthOCSports. Email at firstname.lastname@example.org.