Boys' basketball: Taft is No. 1 seed in City Section Division I playoffs
Former NBA guard Jason Hart, 33, in his first season coaching high school basketball, has his Woodland Hills Taft team seeded No. 1 in the City Section Division I playoff pairings released on Saturday.
The Toreadors (24-3) will open at home on Friday night against No. 16 West Adams.
Fairfax (19-9) received the No. 2 seed, followed by No. 3 Westchester (20-6), No. 4 Palisades (16-10) and No. 5 Crenshaw (22-4).
“I’m using the knowledge I learned from many coaches,” Hart said. “People look at me and see I’m young. But I know a little about basketball, too.”
Taft owns a win over No. 2 Fairfax and has been led by 6-foot-8 Anthony January, a transfer from Compton who became eligible in late December.
The seeding committee had to make a decision about the three-way tie for first place in the Western League among Fairfax, Westchester and Palisades, and decided the Lions’ sweep of Westchester, combined with a strong nonleague schedule, gave them the edge.
One of the best early matchups should come in the quarterfinals, with an expected Palisades-Crenshaw meeting. And the winner would earn an automatic invite to the state playoffs.
First-round games Friday
No. 16 West Adams at No. 1 Taft
No. 9 University at No. 8 Birmingham
No. 12 Sylmar at No. 5 Crenshaw
No. 13 Manual Arts at No. 4 Palisades
No. 14 Poly at No. 3 Westchester
No. 11 Fremont at No. 6 Washington
No. 10 Cleveland at No. 7 Dorsey
No. 15 Roybal at No. 2 Fairfax.
-- Eric Sondheimer