Campolindo-Moraga 60, Salesian-Richmond 59: Aidan Mahaney made it seem so simple. The Campolindo sophomore guard took over Saturday’s CIF Division 1 boys Northern Region semifinal, scoring 15 of his game-high 32 points in the fourth quarter as the Cougars pulled out a thrilling win over Salesian at Albany High School.
Campolindo (25-6) advances to the regional final on March 10 against the winner of the De La Salle-Riordan game.
“I make a joke with my coaches and my friends, I think I’m built for it,” Mahaney said. “I’ve been working out like this since I was 4 years old, 5 years old, I’ve been working for these types of moments, over and over and over again. To succeed in these is great, but I’ve been working my whole life for stuff like this. I won’t say I expect it, but I keep working at it.”
Campolindo’s Emmanuel Callas scored the first points of the game on a 3-pointer, but Salesian quickly jumped in front. Demarshay Johnson Jr. had six points in the first quarter, including a pair of dunks, as the Pride (25-7) took a 15-9 lead at the end of one.
The Cougars fought back and took an oh-so-brief lead at 16-15 midway through the second period. But Salesian then went on a 14-0 run to go up 29-16. Te’Jon Sawyer and Shane Bell each scored seven in the second quarter to help lead the onslaught.
However, Campolindo came back in the third quarter, and the game stayed tight down the stretch. Mahoney, who had just five points at halftime, scored 12 in the third quarter, burying three 3-pointers along the way. Late in the game, with the Cougars up 53-51, it was Mahaney who extended it to 55-51. Up 57-53, Mahaney drained clock before hitting a fantastic fallback jumper at the shot clock buzzer. Up 57-55, Mahaney against worked the shot clock before hitting a long 3-pointer.
In the final minute, Salesian had to foul three times to put Campolindo in the bonus. Mahaney finally went to the line with 7.4 seconds left and shockingly missed the front end of the 1-and-1. At the buzzer, Jaden Lazo missed a potential game-winning 3-pointer and the Cougars emerged with the win.
Matt Radell had 10 points for Campolindo. Sawyer scored 13 for Salesian while Bell and Johnson finished with 12 apiece.
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