Cool hoop events in the O.C. this weekend

GARDEN GROVE – The “spring season” for Southern California high school basketball begins in earnest this weekend via a couple of travel ball events.

The Dinos Trigonis-fronted ‘Pangos Premier Spring Spectacular” tips off Friday night at 7 o’clock at the MAP Sports Complex (12552 Avenue, Garden Grove) with three sets of games spread over eight courts at 7, 8:10 and 9:20.

The most notable of the scheduled first-night clashes are (8:10, Court 3) Compton Magic Elite vs. Orange County Pride Blue and (9:20, Court 3) Belmont Shore vs. Branch West Elite.

The Compton Magic squad is expected to be led by 6-foot-5 Jules Bernard (Windward), 6-8 Onyeka Okongwu (Chino Hills), 6-8 Isaiah Mobley (Rancho Christian) and 6-3 Jarod Lucas (Los Altos).

The Belmont Shore team will include two of the better 2018 prospects in the west – and beyond – 6-3 guards David Singleton (Bishop Montgomery) and Bryce Hamilton (Pasadena).

Action shifts to Westminster and Fullerton high schools, as well as Hope International University (Fullerton) on Saturday, and conclude Sunday at Westminster, Artesia (Lakewood), Fullerton, as well as St. Matthias/St. Pius  (Downey).

For the entire schedule, go to

The SoCal Tip-Off is set for Saturday and Sunday, also in Garden Grove, at the Next Level Sports Complex (12821 Knott), with the first games tipping at 9 in the morning and the last (spread over 10 courts) getting underway at 7 p.m.

Some of the most noteworthy travel (“club” or “grassroots”) programs scheduled to participate include Cal Supreme, Earl Watson Elite, Gamepoint (San Diego), Pump N Run, Team ELEATE (Riverside County), Dream Vision, Big Ballers (Chino Hills), IEBP (San Bernardino County) and Prodigy Elite (Inland Empire and San Gabriel Valley).

There are also multiple programs from northern California and adjacent states, too, scheduled to participate.

The EWE top team (“Earl Watson Elite Under Armour 17s) has a roster that includes 2018 standouts in 6-9 Miles Norris (La Mesa Helix), 6-9 Riley Battin and 6-4 Wes Slajchert (both Oak Park), 6-3 Cameron Shelton (La Verne Damien) and 5-9 D.J. McDonald (Mission Hills Alemany).

Gamepoint also has what should be a very strong top team (“Gamepoint-PumpNRun 17s”) with the likes of 6-1 Taurus Samuels (Vista), 6-8 Warren Washington (San Diego Mission Hills), 6-10 Fred Odhiambo (Alemany) and 6-3 Wayne Arnold (Compton Dominguez).

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