Pintos score Courtwarming win

Curtis Lehman (44) puts up a shot during the varsity game against Eldon Friday night at California's Courtwarming. The Pintos defeated the Mustangs 54-44.

Curtis Lehman (44) puts up a shot during the varsity game against Eldon Friday night at California's Courtwarming. The Pintos defeated the Mustangs 54-44. Photo by April Arnett.

The California Pintos hosted Eldon for Courtwarming Friday, where the varsity captured a 54-44 win from the Mustangs.

California led 16-13 after the first quarter, 28-16 at the half, and 43-29 after three quarters.

Jaden Barr led the Pintos with 25 points, while Curtis Lehman scored 10 points and had five rebounds and three blocks. The Pintos sank eight 3-pointers.

"This was a good win," California Coach Blair Scanlon said. "It was a great environment for Courtwarming. We played pretty decent."

California’s JVB team ended a two-quarter game in a tie at 15-15, while the JVA defeated the Mustangs 50-32.

The Courtwarming coronation was held prior to the varsity game, where Ana Strickfaden and Jason Wolverton were crowned queen and king, and Jasmine Wells and Jaden Barr were crowned princess and prince. Halftime events included a scrimmage by local Special Olympics athletes, and performances by the CHS Dance Squad, CHS Cheerleaders and the CHS Drumline.

The Pintos traveled to Dixon Saturday, where they lost a close contest to the Bulldogs, 59-56.

Dixon led 15-12 after one quarter, however, the Pintos had pulled ahead 30-21 by the half. The Bulldogs went on to lead 39-38 after three quarters and came away with the win. The Pintos came close to changing the outcome in the final seconds of the game when Burke Brant sank a 3-pointer to put California within one point of Dixon, however, Collin Holzer then hit two free throws to give the Bulldogs a 3-point edge, and ultimately the win.

"We had one bad quarter that hurt us," Scanlon said. "Too many turnovers in the third quarter. We should've won this one, but we did hold them to under 60 points, which was pretty good."

Chase Ramsdell led California with 14 points, followed by Lehman with 13 points, nine rebounds and four assists, while Barr scored 12 and Conner George added 10.

The Pintos were 8-14 from the free-throw line.

Dixon (16-7) was led by Holzer with 24 points.

California’s JV defeated Dixon 62-37.

Previously, California hosted Warsaw for Senior Night Feb. 5, where the varsity won a close contest, 82-80.

The Pintos led 16-13 after one quarter, 33-26 at the half, and 59-38 after three quarters. The Wildcats outscored the Pintos 42-23 in the final frame, but it just wasn't enough to take the win.

"This was a weird game," Scanlon said. "We dominated the first three quarters and then Warsaw hit a barrage of 3-pointers like I've never seen in my coaching career."

California was led by Barr with 24 points. Lehman followed with 15, eight rebounds and five blocks, while Ramsdell scored 14 pointsand had five assists. Damon Shaw added 11 points and grabbed seven rebounds.

California's JVB team defeated Warsaw 40-3 in a two-quarter game, followed by a 54-20 win by California's JVA team.

During the Senior Night ceremony, Lehman and Jason Wolverton, along with their parents, were recognized, as well as the following senior members of CHS Sounds of Joy: Taylor Bleich, Jordan Brizendine, Audrey Imhoff, Alex Pace, Tyler Silvey and Ana Strickfaden.

The Pintos traveled to Wardsville to play Blair Oaks Tuesday, Feb. 12, however, game results were not available at press time.

The Pintos will play their final games of the regular season at Tipton Friday, beginning with the JV game at 6 p.m.

California (13-9 and 4-2 in Tri-County Conference) will participate in the Class 3 District 8 Tournament Feb. 19-23 at Ashland. The #6 seeded Pintos will play #3 seeded Eugene at 9 p.m. Tuesday, Feb. 19.

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