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Eberhard electric for CdM

BASKETBALL: Senior foward scores career-high 35 points to compensate for the foul trouble Kaluz gets into against Laguna Hills.

January 12, 2008|By David Carrillo PeƱaloza

CORONA DEL MAR — No one had to tell forward Joe Eberhard what do on the basketball court.

The go-to-guy privileges at Corona del Mar High were his, just as they were for most of the summer with teammate Stefan Kaluz at AAU tournaments.

Kaluz was gone again. This time because of foul trouble against you named it, Laguna Hills, Friday night.

Once Kaluz headed for the bench before halftime, Eberhard poured it on. The 6-foot-6 senior allowed Kaluz to stay out for stretches to avoid getting tossed again against the Hawks.

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Kaluz didn’t sit for long, rising to his feet animated as did the rest of the Sea Kings on the bench. Eberhard nailed more things than someone with a hammer on “Extreme Makeover,” as he scored 18 points in the second quarter.

But his biggest points came later with CdM up by one midway through the fourth quarter and Laguna Hills thinking upset. In a 53-second span, he grabbed his own miss and scored and he followed that up with his fourth three-pointer, putting away the Hawks en route to scoring 11 of his career-high 35 points in the final quarter to lift the Sea Kings to a 68-53 Pacific Coast League victory.

In the waning seconds, Laguna Hills Coach Joe Brick stared at the court. After seeing his team hold Kaluz to 15 points and 10 rebounds, the other player he was worried about was about to flip the ball to the referee, signaling the end to the game.

The Hawks (5-15, 0-1 in league) were so close again of derailing CdM in league. The only blemish the Sea Kings (12-5, 2-0) had in league last year was a 64-63 loss to Laguna Hills, costing them an outright league title. CdM and Laguna Hills shared it, even the league MVP honors.

The hardware belonged to Kaluz, with his stellar numbers last year at center, 21 points, 12 rebounds and 2.3 blocks per game. But in the loss at Laguna Hills, he received two technical fouls and was ejected. Kaluz eventually led the Sea Kings to the CIF Southern Section Division III-A championship, earning him the section Player of the Year award.

Knowing that the 6-9 Kaluz would draw the attention again as a senior, Eberhard has taken it upon himself to score by averaging 15 points per game this season. The Brown University-bound Kaluz gets double- and triple-teamed practically every time, and he always seems to be in foul trouble against Laguna Hills, so Eberhard made the most of his opportunities.

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