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Early surge lifts Coyotes to win

Wendy Alexander/The Madera Tribune

Madera’s Kevin Berdejo (0) tries to go by Madera South’s Jojo Galvan (23) in Wednesday’s victory. Berdejo scored 15 points to help the Stallions to a 13-point win.


The Madera Coyotes boys basketball team jumped out to a first quarter lead and didn’t look back in a 67-54 victory over the Madera South Stallions in Joe Flores Gym.

Fawzat Saed keyed a fourth quarter run and led the team with 20 points to go with six rebounds. He also hit three 3-pointers.

“Fawzat has been huge for us,” head coach David Lozano said. “He’s been selfless for us. It’s been a pleasure to coach. He worked on his game during the pandemic on his own. He’s carried us offensively the whole season.”

Kevin Berdejo also scored 15 points for the Coyotes who had nine players score points. Raul Medrano scored eight with while A.J. Pickens and Isaiah Monge added seven points each.

After getting outscored 36-20 in the first half, the Stallions battled back and outscored the Coyotes 34-31 in the second half.

Isaiah Ford led the Stallions with 16 points. Jojo Galvan added 15 points with 11 rebounds. The Stallions also had eight different players score.

The Coyotes jumped out to a 10-0 lead to open the game. Saed got the scoring started with a 3-pointer. Monge added another 3-pointer and found Medrano for a layup. Berdejo drove for another layup and the Coyotes were rolling.

Ford made a layup off an inbounds play to get Madera South on the scoreboard three minutes into the game.

Berdejo made a runner and Pickens converted a 3-point play to open the lead to 15-2.

Madera South made a six-point run starting with two Garet Waits free throws. Galvan made a layup and two free throws to cut the lead to seven.

Saed scored down low to give the Coyotes a 17-9 lead at the end of the first quarter.

It took almost two minutes into the second quarter before any team scored. Hector DeJesus cut Madera’s lead to seven with a free throw.

However, Saed made a 3-pointer to the lead back to double digits.

Galvan made a layup and Pickens answered with a pair of free throws. Martin Corona put back a miss for a 24-12 Madera lead.

The Coyotes got a pair of offensive putbacks to open the lead to 16. Medrano put back a Berdejo miss and Monge put back a Corona miss for a 28-12 lead.

Erik Cervantez came down with a Madera South rebound and went coast-to-coast for a layup.

Robbie Baez answered for the Coyotes with a 3-pointer. Cervantez drove in for a layup, but Saed answered with a bucket.

Joseph Velasquez made a pair of free throws for the Stallions. Madera got a free throw from Pickens and Pickens found Medrano for a layup after a Ford putback for a 36-20 lead at the half.

“I told them not to lose energy because those kids are going to keep playing hard,” Lozano said. “They are tough and they battled. Their bench was loud and supportive. If we came out lethargic and flat-footed, they are going to jump on us.”

The two teams traded buckets in the third quarter.

Berdejo made a layup, but Cervantez answered with one of his own. Berdejo made two free throws, but Cervantez made another layup.

Almost three minutes went by without a score before Jojo Pickens made a free throw. Galvan made two of his own.

Bryson Smith made a free throw, but Galvan answered with a layup to keep the Coyotes’ lead at 12.

Velasquez, Berdejo and Ford traded free throws before Saed hit another 3-pointer for a 45-31 lead.

Ford hit a short bucket to cut Madera’s lead to 12 at the end of the fourth quarter.

Ford opened the fourth quarter with a layup, but Paul Ramirez answered with a 3-pointer to give the Coyotes a 48-35 lead.

Galvan sank a pair of free throws while Medrano sank two of his own. Ford hit a 3-pointer to get the Stallions within 10.

In a wild flurry, the Stallions cut the lead to eight. Monge made two free throws, but Galvan sank a 3-pointer. After a Berdejo layup, C.J. Robinson hit a 3-pointer for a 54-46 Madera lead.

Berdejo made a layup to get the lead back to 10 as the two teams exchanged buckets.

Rondell Jordan put back a miss for Madera South.

Saed provided the offense for the Coyotes while holding off the Stallions. He hit a 10-foot jumper. After Ford hit a seven-foot jumper, Saed sank a 3-pointer.

Ford answered with a layup to cut the lead to 61-52 with a minute left.

Saed put the dagger in with a layup to get the lead to 11.

Madera South closed out their scoring with a Jordan putback.

Madera closed out its scoring with a Pickens free throw and a Berdejo layup for the 67-54 final.



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