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Varsity Bruin Boys Close Out TVL Action
The Riverbank Bruins boys basketball team brought its season-long battle in the Trans-Valley League to a close with a pair of league losses, the finale being a 98-52 season-ending loss to the Modesto Christian Crusaders.

The Bruins opened up recent TVL action with a heart-stopping 50-49 loss to the Escalon Cougars, leaving Riverbank with one final chance at a win against the outright league champion Crusaders.

Riverbank continued to get above average production from the squad's leading scorer Francisco Pineda. Pineda made it his business to close out the Bruins' season on a roll, putting up team-high totals in both contests. Pineda was able to scorch the Cougars for 18 points, while ending the season at Modesto Christian with a 16-point effort.

Against Escalon the Bruins held a 29-20 halftime lead, before Escalon put up back-to-back 15-point quarters to pull away from the Bruins over the second half. A disappointing nine point third quarter for the Bruins opened the door up for the Escalon comeback.

Lucas Pope was the Bruins second leader scorer in the Escalon game, finishing with 13 points, including two 3-point baskets. Eric Page closed out the contest with eight points, including two 3-pointers, while teammate Chris Mitchell added seven in the loss.

Riverbank's season ending loss to the Crusaders was an entirely different affair. The Bruins put up a valiant effort, but the TVL's top squad seemed to be poised to make another Division V postseason run.

Modesto Christian outscored the Bruins 52-24 over the game's first 16 minutes of action, and never slowed down falling a single-bucket shy of the century mark. The Bruins were able to close out the contest by outscoring the Crusaders over the final eight minutes of play, yet the damage had already been done.

Pineda closed out the season with Riverbank's hot hand, scoring a team-high 16 against Modesto Christian, while teammate Mitchell added 10 points in the loss.

The loss closed out a season in which the Bruins had their far share of success, competing in each of the team's 15 TVL contests, and constantly improving on their offensive production as a team throughout the entire season. It translated into just three wins against the tough league, however.

Now Riverbank will wait patiently as the TVL prepares to hand out its All-TVL honors, with a handful of Bruins poised to be recognized for their season-long effort. Even with the dominating play of the Crusaders and other league front-runners, like Hughson and Ripon, the Bruins know that some of their star-power deserves to be honored.

The community also recognized the Riverbank senior players and cheerleaders in ceremonies to close out the season in earlier action at home, saluting the Bruins for their effort and dedication.