Clayton Valley trio combines for 53 points to lead Ugly Eagles past SHP in first round of NorCal regionals

CLAYTON — When Clayton Valley’s three guard trio of James Moore, Elijah Perryman and Chase Robertson get going, it’s hard to stop the Ugly Eagles.

Sacred Heart Prep saw that first hand.

Moore, Perryman and Robertson combined for 53 points to lead No. 6 seed Clayton Valley to a 63-50 win over No. 11 SHP in the first round of the California Interscholastic Federation NorCal playoffs. The Ugly Eagles will face No. 3 Archbishop Mitty in the next round on Thursday.

“When you bond as much as we do on and off the court, it reflects in our play,” said Moore, who reached the 1,000 career points mark Tuesday. “(Elijah) is the one that gets me and the team going. I feed off him and he feeds off me.”

Moore led all scorers with 22 points, Perryman had 21 and Robertson chipped in 10.

J.P Kerrigan led SHP with 13 points and Drew Wagner had eight.

SHP played a zone defense early to try and halt Clayton Valley’s dribble drive offense. The strategy worked for parts of the first quarter, but Clayton Valley coach Frank Allocco Jr. made the right adjustments to open the perimeter up for the Ugly Eagle guards.

“We trust our guys against a zone to figure it out,” Allocco said. “It’s hard to play a zone that long at this level without teams figuring it out.”

Coming out of a timeout in the second quarter, Allocco went to a smaller lineup and inserted Moore down low near the basket. The 6-foot-2 senior scored 10 points in the second quarter alone to help Clayton Valley go into halftime with a 29-21 lead.

“When I was in that dunker spot, I just had to be ready because I knew Elijah was going to find me,” Moore said.

Clayton Valley’s offense got going early in the third quarter. The Ugly Eagles went on a 15-9 run to start the second half and led by as much as 16.

After a relatively quiet first half, Robertson was Clayton Valley’s defensive stalwart as he recorded three steals and scored seven points in the final two quarters. Robertson’s defensive presence created easy scores for Moore and Perryman in transition, helping Clayton Valley build its lead.

“I think it starts with defense with those guys,” Allocco said about Moore, Perryman and Robertson’s third quarter output. “Those guys are great players and we feel like our guards are as good as anybody in NorCal. They showed that tonight.”

SHP gave a valiant effort in the fourth quarter, cutting the Clayton Valley lead to as little as six with under two minutes left. But time wasn’t on the Gators side as they were forced to foul late in the game. Clayton Valley went 10 of 15 at the free throw line in the fourth quarter to seal the win.

While the Gators season ended Tuesday, coach Tony Martinelli said he is proud of what his senior class accomplished this season. SHP won the West Bay Athletic League title with a perfect 10-0 record and beat teams such as Granada, Lincoln (San Francisco), Justin-Siena and Bellarmine — all teams who secured a CIF NorCal playoff spot.

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