Southern California Boys Athletes of the Week, Feb. 22

Each week, publications from the Southern California News Group’s 11 properties (Orange County Register, L.A. Daily News, Press-Enterprise, San Gabriel Valley Tribune, Long Beach Press-Telegram, The Daily Breeze, San Bernardino Sun, Daily Bulletin, Redlands Daily Facts, Whittier Daily News and Pasadena-Star News) select the Athletes of the Week for their respective region.

Here are the selections for this week.

(The voting for the SCNG Athlete of the Week has been stopped indefinitely.)

Julien Gomez, La Mirada: The Matadores’ star sophomore had two big games to help his team reach the CIF Southern Section Division 2A championship game for a second straight season. Gomez had a big second half and finished with 34 points in a quarterfinal victory over Walnut 79-69. In La MIrada’s 55-37 semifinal win over Newport Beach’s Pacifica Christian, Gomez tallied 17 points. La Mirada will take on Rancho Christian in Saturday’s championship game at Colony High School at 4 p.m.

Alex Lugo, Animo Leadership: The junior midfielder scored a hat trick Saturday to lead the Aztec Eagles to a 5-0 win over Brea Olinda in the CIF-Southern Section Division 5 semifinals. Animo will be on the road against Palm Desert in Saturday’s CIF-SS final.

Carson Brown, Tesoro: He scored 57 points over two wins in the CIF Southern Section Division 2AA playoffs as the Titans advanced to the division’s championship game. Brown, a 6-3 guard, scored 18 points with eight rebounds in a 40-37 win over Rancho Verde in the quarterfinals. He scored 39 points in a 68-65 overtime win over Culver City in the semifinals. Tesoro plays Orange Lutheran in the 2AA championship game Saturday at 8 p.m. at Edison High.

Jimmy Baker, Etiwanda: Baker, a 6-foot-2 guard, averaged 19.5 points over two games to help the Eagles advance to the CIF Southern Section Division 1 championship game, the program’s eighth trip to the section finals. Baker scored a team-high 19 points in a 69-41 victory over St. Paul in the quarterfinal round. Baker led the team again with 20 points, as the Eagles rallied for a 67-57 over Anaheim Canyon in the semifinals. He scored 13 points during the second half and drained a 3-pointer that capped a decisive 16-4 run in the fourth quarter.

Tyrone Riley, St. Pius X-St. Matthias: The 6-foot-6 junior guard scored a career-high 53 points and grabbed 18 rebounds in an 82-59 win at Buena on Friday, Feb. 17. Riley holds more than a dozen Division I college basketball scholarship offers, and he recently announced new offers from the University of Florida and Xavier University. St. Pius X-St. Matthias will play La Serna in the Division 3AA championship game at Colony High School on Saturday at noon.

Souljah Niles, Taft: Niles scored 13 points in a 55-46 victory over Westchester in the semifinals of the City Section Open Division playoffs at Pasadena City College. After scoring on a layup to give Taft a 46-45 advantage, Niles sank a 3-pointer to extend the lead to 49-45 with 1:26 to play.

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