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St. Helena High Boys Basketball

St. Helena High's Christian Iano (5) attacks the basket against El Molino last Friday in St. Helena.

Dave Mosher photo

It was a cold night all around in Winters Saturday, but the St. Helena High varsity boys basketball team was able to get it done, defeating the hosting Warriors 37-26.

“It was a hard-fought game against a physical opponent in a cold gym,” said Saints head coach Joe Densberger. “I’m proud of the kids and happy to come out with a win.”

Nick Jewerowski led St. Helena (5-3) with 13 points, eight rebounds and two steals. Ethan Battistini, who was double- and triple-teamed all night, finished with 11 points and nine rebounds.

Also playing well for St. Helena were Jonathan Gamble (six points, three rebounds, three assists, two steals), Olie Russum (two points, two offensive rebounds, two steals), Ryan Rockwood (two points, three rebounds, two assists) and Christian Iano (two points and one steal).

The Saints return to action on Dec. 28, traveling up the coast for the Fort Bragg Invitational. They open the three-day event with a game against St. Bernards of Eureka.

St. Helena 57, El Molino 49

Battistini scored 13 of his career-high 29 points in the second half as the Saints outscored the Lions 24-14 over the final two quarters to complete an exciting comeback at home last Friday.

St. Helena slashed an eight-point deficit in the second quarter to 35-33 by halftime, behind the inspired defensive play of Christian Cia and Rockwood. After a tightly played third quarter, the teams began the fourth quarter tied at 41-41.

The see-saw battle finally swung in St. Helena’s favor late in the game when the Saints dominated the defensive boards, and came through with several key stops down the stretch.

The 6-foot-7 Battistini, who surpassed the 25-point career high he posted last year, also had 10 rebounds, five deflected passes, two steals, and his ninth 3-pointer of the season.

“Ethan played great and had a huge presence inside,” Saints assistant coach Jim Gamble said. “His inside-outside game is really tough for our opponents to defend. For a big guy, he has an incredibly smooth shooting stroke and has great range.”

Russum added nine points, five rebounds and a steal, Jeweroski eight points and nine rebounds, Rockwood five points, six deflections and two steals, Cia four points and three deflections, and Gamble 11 rebounds.

JV Boys Basketball

Winters 42, St. Helena 41

With seconds left, the Saints clung to a one-point lead, but an ill-advised foul with just two ticks on the clock put the hosting Warriors at the line to sink the go-ahead free throws.

Saturday’s game ended with a desperate shot attempt by the Saints that was unsuccessful.

Emmet Bowen and Fawad Muhammad led St. Helena with 10 points apiece. Caleb Jeske scored eight.

El Molino 70, St. Helena 67

Behind a 21-point effort from Jeske last Friday, the Saints played with “an energy and intensity we have been void of and searching for during the 2017-18 preseason and was brought to light in our first home game,” coach Meshach Osborne said.

Muhammad had 18 points and Jake Mendes scored 11 for St. Helena, which had “an offensive awakening that was crowd pleasing and welcome to see,” Osborne added. “The improvements made by the Saints are encouraging signs moving towards the regular season.”

College Men’s Basketball

Simpson 104, Pacific Union College 85

The Pioneers had five players score in double figures, but still lost their California Pacific Conference opener Monday in Redding.

It was the fourth loss in five games for the Pioneers.

Jayson Marquez led Pacific Union (2-6) with 19 points on 6-of-12 shooting. Marquez had three assists and two rebounds.

Chris Camper scored 18 points on 5-of-10 shooting. Rae Hubbard scored 16 points on 4-of-11 shooting with two rebounds.

Devon Pinnock scored 12 points on 5-of-10 shooting with four assists, two steals and two rebounds.

Jeremiah Blandin had 10 points on 3-of-8 from the floor, eight rebounds and two assists.

Brandon Franklin had seven points and four rebounds.

The Pioneers were ahead by five points early in the game, but Simspon held a 42-36 lead at halftime.

Pacific Union College 131, Northwest Indian 106

Pacific Union won its non-conference game Saturday over Northwest Indian College in Rocklin.

Noel Briones led the Pioneers with 24 points. Marquez scored 16 points, Blandin had 15 points and 10 rebounds, Franklin and Wayne Englestad each had 12, Hubbard had 11, and Dreymon Jones had seven.

The Pioneers were ahead at halftime, 58-39.

Notre Dame De Namur 61, Pacific Union College 59

In last week’s non-conference loss in Belmont, the Pioneers were led by Hubbard with 13 points and four steals, Marquez with 13 points, Blandin with 10 points, and Franklin with six steals.

Women’s College Basketball

Simpson 64, Pacific Union College 61

Pacific Union lost its California Pacific Conference opener Monday to Simpson University, 64-61, in Redding.

The Pioneers (1-6 overall) were led by Imari Clinton (16 points, four assists, four rebounds), Faith Williams (11 points, four rebounds), Karla McCommas (10 points, three rebounds), Kylie Beal (nine points), Dominique Gordon (nine points, 12 rebounds), and Bailey Hunter (five rebounds).