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Big Bruin Names Committing To Alumni Tournament
The second annual Riverbank High Alumni Basketball Tournament is still a month away, but varsity Bruin coach Jeff Jennings has already secured commitments from seven teams and a bevy of prestigious alumnus.

The July 23 and 24 event is expected to draw a large contingent of the community in a celebration of Riverbank basketball at the spectacular new Bruin gymnasium.

Alumni have already been flooding in for open gym on Sundays and even weekday prep practices at the state-of-the-art arena.

"A lot of guys are showing up, wanting to get in shape," Jennings said. "I hear a lot of guys are going on diets, and one even has a countdown to the tournament on his Facebook page."

The early preparation from Bruin grads isn't much of a surprise, especially considering a late notice tourney in 2009 collected 10 teams for a successful outing without much publicity.

"I am really excited to see what a little preparation will do after a good turnout last year with basically no prior notice," Jennings said. "Something that I have inherited and tried to keep going is a sense of tradition and family at RHS. This tournament is a big part of that."

Most of Riverbank's 2001 Sac-Joaquin Section championship team has committed to the Alumni games, including Menlo College blocks and rebounds leader, Aaron Gentry. The Bruin grad earned prep fame for making the game-winning shot over Sierra in the SJS finals.

He's not the only college hoops star to make the trip.

NAIA All American Chris Gonzales (Westmont College) is set to make his second run at the Alumni Tourney. Andre Bobbitt, Riverbank's first and only Division I NCAA scholarship player, will also participate.

Standout Bruin players Miguel Alaniz (1991 District Player of the Year), Hector Duarte (All NorCal), Brian Rotan (All District), Steve Meinert (All District) are also slated to light up the Riverbank gymnasium.

Big Bruin names like Mike Rotan, Gaylord Horney, Troy Bradey, Jerry Lindsey, Ray Baca, Miguel Zamora, John Hedlund and Steve Costalupes will take on the best of Riverbank grads as well.

"Everybody tells their war stories, and those game-winning shots get bigger each time you hear about them," Jennings said, laughing. "Having coached for 15 years, I get a chance to see the guys I coached, the guys I played with and the guys who played before me.

"It's pretty special to have all those guys in the same place at the same time."