Basketball

Long Beach Poly boys basketball tops El Camino Real in state playoffs

Long Beach Poly’s Malik Salahuddin #3 steals the ball away form El Camino Real’s Eddy Egun #10 during their CIF State boys basketball playoff game at El Camino High School in Woodland Hills, Wednesday, Mar. 7, 2018. (Photo by Hans Gutknecht, Los Angeles Daily News/SCNG)
Long Beach Poly’s Malik Salahuddin #3 steals the ball away form El Camino Real’s Eddy Egun #10 during their CIF State boys basketball playoff game at El Camino High School in Woodland Hills, Wednesday, Mar. 7, 2018. (Photo by Hans Gutknecht, Los Angeles Daily News/SCNG)

WOODLAND HILLS – Long Beach Poly isn’t the tallest team in the CIF State boys basketball playoffs or physically the most menacing. However, defense has become the team’s trademark in 2018.

Poly forced 14 turnovers in the second half Wednesday night and defeated El Camino Real on the road 69-53, advancing the Jackrabbits to the CIF State Division I second round, where they’ll play St. John Bosco on Saturday.

“One thing about Poly basketball is the fact that we play defense,” Poly coach Shelton Diggs said. “We were a little bit undersized this year but we played hard and that’s how you win games.”

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