Union Democrat staff

The Columbia Claim Jumpers won two of three games over the weekend at the Santa Barbara City Tournament. The Jumpers started the season 1-4 and entered the tournament with a two game winning streak and now sit at an even 5-5.

Columbia’s only loss came Thursday in the opening round against Grossmont. The Jumpers led 36-32 at halftime but were outscored 33-25 in the second half.

Columbia led 61-60 with one minute to play following a Lewayne Grant free throw. Grossmont took the lead off of a contested elbow shot and the Jumpers could not score again.

Grant led Columbia with 19 points and had five assists. Jordan Windley scored 14, Elan Spencer had 10, DeAndre Stallings had eight points and eight rebounds and Eugene Harvey scored seven, had eight rebounds, two steals and two blocks.

On Friday, Columbia regrouped and defeated host Santa Barbara 75-72. Columbia had a sluggish first half and trailed 56-36 at the midpoint. But the Jumpers came out strong in the second half and took the lead within the first six minutes of the half.

Santa Barbara tied the game with 36 seconds remaining. But Stallings drained a 30-foot 3 with 10 seconds left for the win. The Jumpers outscored Santa Barbara 39-21 in the final 20 minutes.

Grant led Columbia with 25 points, dished out four assists and had two steals. Ethan McLaurin had his best game of the year, scoring 16, pulling down eight rebounds and stealing two passes. Stallings had 15 points and five boards. Harvey and Windley each had eight points and Spencer blocked three shots.

On the final day of the tournament, Columbia won a close 76-75 contest over Oxnard.

The Jumpers got 20 first half points from Stallings and led 43-35 at the break.

With one minute to play in the game, Columbia trailed for the first time.

Harvey got fouled with one second to play and made clutch free throws to give Columbia the win.

Stallings scored a team-high 25 points and drained six 3-pointers. Grant had 23 points, five rebounds and four assists. McLaurin had six points, while Harvey and Spencer combined for 10 rebounds.

Grant was awarded All-Tournament honors, finishing the weekend with 67 points.

“We are playing really well right now,” said Columbia head coach Rob Hoyt. “We feel like we are at a place with our team where we can compete at the top of our conference (Central Valley Conference). We look forward to competing against a good Delta team and getting conference play started.”

Columbia doesn’t return to the court until it hosts San Joaquin Delta College at 6 p.m. Friday, Dec. 30, at Oak Pavilion.

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