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Boys' basketball: Redondo is the surprise team still alive

March 14, 2013 |  3:52 pm

If all the teams still alive in the CIF Southern California basketball championships were put up on a blackboard and someone asked, "Which team is the biggest surprise?" the easy answer would be Redondo.

The Sea Hawks were 10-17 last season. Their coach was fired.

Reggie Morris Jr., who won section titles at St. Bernard and Leuzinger, was hired. Most expected Morris to have an impact, but not this fast. How the Sea Hawks (26-8) have been able to make it to the Division II regional final on Saturday at noon against Riverside North (31-3) at Citizens Business Park Arena is pretty stunning.

The best clue about Redondo making dramatic improvement came on Jan. 5, when the Sea Hawks came close to upsetting then unbeaten Bishop Montgomery, 60-58. They've won 19 consecutive games since that loss, led by junior guard Ian Fox (15.6 average) and senior guard Derek Biale (13.6)

North has a rising junior standout in Deshon Taylor, who's averaging close to 20 points a game.

If Redondo makes it to Sacramento, the school's surfers will have to pack up the boards for a day to celebrate a team that has come very far in a short time.

-- Eric Sondheimer