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Boys' basketball: Talent is flowing to Sierra Canyon

August 31, 2010 | 10:40 am

Sierra Canyon, a Chatsworth-based school that has had a high school for only six years, is loading up on basketball players.

Athletic Director Rock Pillsbury confirmed that showing up to the opening day of school on Tuesday were top freshmen players Devin Burleson, Namon Wright, Brian Alberts and Marsalis Johnson. Also there was Sherman Oaks Notre Dame transfer Jahmel Taylor, a sophomore.

The 6-foot-7 Burleson, who has a scholarship offer from USC, and Wright played for L.A. Price this past summer and have lived in Palmdale. Alberts, who attended Sierra Canyon's middle school, played for Sylmar during the summer, and Sylmar Coach Bort Escoto called him the best freshman in the San Fernando Valley. And the 6-5 Johnson is the younger brother of former North Hollywood Campbell Hall standout James Johnson.

They arrive as the school begins building a new gymnasium scheduled to open next September that will have an NBA-size center court and will cost nearly $7 million, with a seven-figure donation from a benefactor school officials say wishes to remain anonymous.

The school is trying to become similar to North Hollywood Harvard-Westlake in academics and athletics.

Sierra Canyon also brought in from the IMG Academy in Florida, Mike Moreau, to be director of basketball, and Ryan Silver, a former Rolling Hills Prep coach, to be the coach.

-- Eric Sondheimer

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