The former assistant coach from Mission Hills, Anthony Bolton, is leading the Panthers to one of their best seasons in school history.
The new Vista High coach led “Big Red” to 70-63 victory over his former squad in a CIF-San Diego Open Division first-round playoff game at Vista High on Saturday night.
Photos by Shawn Hobson
“It’s not a surprise for me to have this team make a run like this. The coach before me did a great job setting the table for a run like this,” Bolton said. “The talent was here. I just want our kids to talk less, and make our actions speak for itself.”
Bolton respects the experience he gained while serving under Mission Hills head coach Curtis Hofmeister. He’s respectful, and not boastful after the win.
“Coach Hoffy is a mentor of mine. It was a battle of wills tonight,” Bolton said. “They have a great team over there, but we just won tonight.”
The Mission Hills coach was equally respectful after the loss. The two teams played twice during the Avocado East League season, splitting the two-game series. Both teams won on their home courts during the regular season.
“It’s tough losing, but not to him,” Hofmeister said. “It’s a team game. We all contribute to wins and losses, but I think we are two evenly matched teams.”
“Maybe in 24 hours, I will think about it differently,” Hofmeister said.
With the victory, Vista will play at No. 2 seed Torrey Pines on Tuesday night.
“We lost to them earlier in the season,” Bolton said, “but I feel confident that we can beat them next time.”
SCORERS: Mission Hills: Cameron Wagner 21, Warren Washington 18, Ed Fenzi 14, Chris Olave 5, Josh Olave 5. Vista: Isaiah Morris 13, Jordan Hilstock 10, Anthony Anderson 13, Cameron Henry 8, Travis Samuels 19, Makena Moreno 5, Nick Silk 2. TEAM RECORDS: Mission Hills 20-8. Vista 27-3.