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Newport Harbor boys basketball tops Corona del Mar in intense Battle of the Bay clash

Newport Harbor’s boys basketball team is mobbed by fans after...

Newport Harbor’s boys basketball team is mobbed by fans after securing the victory over Corona del Mar during their nonleague boys basketball game at Corona del Mar High School on Saturday Jan. 20, 2024. (Photo by Michael Kitada, Contributing Photographer)

Newport Harbor’s Dash Bastedo, left, fights for possession of the...

Newport Harbor’s Dash Bastedo, left, fights for possession of the ball with Coronal del Mar’s Nick Salmon, center, during the game between Newport Harbor vs. Corona del Mar in a nonleague boys basketball game at Corona del Mar High School on Saturday Jan. 20, 2024. (Photo by Michael Kitada, Contributing Photographer)

Newport Harbor’s Cole Leinart goes to the basket for a...

Newport Harbor’s Cole Leinart goes to the basket for a layup during a game between Newport Harbor vs. Corona del Mar in a nonleague boys basketball game at Corona del Mar High School on Saturday Jan. 20, 2024. (Photo by Michael Kitada, Contributing Photographer)

Newport Harbor’s Cole Leinart lays the ball up during the...

Newport Harbor’s Cole Leinart lays the ball up during the game between Newport Harbor and Corona del Mar in a nonleague boys basketball game at Corona del Mar High School on Saturday Jan. 20, 2024. (Photo by Michael Kitada, Contributing Photographer)

Newport Harbor’s Riggs Guy, left, fights for possession of the...

Newport Harbor’s Riggs Guy, left, fights for possession of the ball with Corona del Mar’s Nick Salmon, right, during the game between Newport Harbor vs. Corona del Mar in a nonleague boys basketball game at Corona del Mar High School on Saturday Jan. 20, 2024. (Photo by Michael Kitada, Contributing Photographer)

Corona del Mar’s Jackson Harlan, left, grabs a rebound from...

Corona del Mar’s Jackson Harlan, left, grabs a rebound from Newport Harbor’s Riggs Guy, right, during the game between Newport Harbor vs. Corona del Mar in a nonleague boys basketball game at Corona del Mar High School on Saturday Jan. 20, 2024. (Photo by Michael Kitada, Contributing Photographer)

Newport Harbor’s Riggs Guy, left, fights for possession of the...

Newport Harbor’s Riggs Guy, left, fights for possession of the ball with Corona del Mar’s Nick Salmon, right, during the game between Newport Harbor vs. Corona del Mar in a nonleague boys basketball game at Corona del Mar High School on Saturday Jan. 20, 2024. (Photo by Michael Kitada, Contributing Photographer)

Corona del Mar’s Maxwell Scott tips the ball into the...

Corona del Mar’s Maxwell Scott tips the ball into the basket during the game between Newport Harbor vs. Corona del Mar in a nonleague boys basketball game at Corona del Mar High School on Saturday Jan. 20, 2024. (Photo by Michael Kitada, Contributing Photographer)

Newport Harbor’s Gavin Guy goes up for a shot during...

Newport Harbor’s Gavin Guy goes up for a shot during the game between Newport Harbor vs. Corona del Mar in a nonleague boys basketball game at Corona del Mar High School on Saturday Jan. 20, 2024. (Photo by Michael Kitada, Contributing Photographer)

Newport Harbor’s Dash Bastedo, left, fights for the ball during...

Newport Harbor’s Dash Bastedo, left, fights for the ball during the game between Newport Harbor vs. Corona del Mar in a nonleague boys basketball game at Corona del Mar High School on Saturday Jan. 20, 2024. (Photo by Michael Kitada, Contributing Photographer)

Corona del Mar’s Luke Mirhashemi, left, and Jackson Harlan, right,...

Corona del Mar’s Luke Mirhashemi, left, and Jackson Harlan, right, attempt to take a rebound from Newport Harbor’s Dash Bastedo, center, during the game between Newport Harbor vs. Corona del Mar in a nonleague boys basketball game at Corona del Mar High School on Saturday Jan. 20, 2024. (Photo by Michael Kitada, Contributing Photographer)

Newport Harbor boys basketball head coach Robert Torribio gestures during...

Newport Harbor boys basketball head coach Robert Torribio gestures during the game between Newport Harbor and Corona del Mar in a nonleague boys basketball game at Corona del Mar High School on Saturday Jan. 20, 2024. (Photo by Michael Kitada, Contributing Photographer)

A scramble for the ball under the Newport Harbor basket...

A scramble for the ball under the Newport Harbor basket during the game between Newport Harbor vs. Corona del Mar in a nonleague boys basketball game at Corona del Mar High School on Saturday Jan. 20, 2024. (Photo by Michael Kitada, Contributing Photographer)

Corona del Mar boys basketball head coach Jason Simco during...

Corona del Mar boys basketball head coach Jason Simco during the game between Newport Harbor and Corona del Mar in a nonleague boys basketball game at Corona del Mar High School on Saturday Jan. 20, 2024. (Photo by Michael Kitada, Contributing Photographer)

Newport Harbor’s Jack Berry takes a jump shot during the...

Newport Harbor’s Jack Berry takes a jump shot during the game between Newport Harbor vs. Corona del Mar in a nonleague boys basketball game at Corona del Mar High School on Saturday Jan. 20, 2024. (Photo by Michael Kitada, Contributing Photographer)

A scramble for a rebound under the Newport Harbor basket...

A scramble for a rebound under the Newport Harbor basket during the game between Newport Harbor vs. Corona del Mar in a nonleague boys basketball game at Corona del Mar High School on Saturday Jan. 20, 2024. (Photo by Michael Kitada, Contributing Photographer)

Newport Harbor’s Riggs Guy is fouled during the game between...

Newport Harbor’s Riggs Guy is fouled during the game between Newport Harbor vs. Corona del Mar in a nonleague boys basketball game at Corona del Mar High School on Saturday Jan. 20, 2024. (Photo by Michael Kitada, Contributing Photographer)

Newport Harbor’s Jack Berry, left, passes before heading out of...

Newport Harbor’s Jack Berry, left, passes before heading out of bounds during the game between Newport Harbor vs. Corona del Mar in a nonleague boys basketball game at Corona del Mar High School on Saturday Jan. 20, 2024. (Photo by Michael Kitada, Contributing Photographer)

The cheer team from Corona del Mar cheers their team...

The cheer team from Corona del Mar cheers their team during the game between Newport Harbor vs. Corona del Mar in a nonleague boys basketball game at Corona del Mar High School on Saturday Jan. 20, 2024. (Photo by Michael Kitada, Contributing Photographer)

Corona del Mar high fans were hopeful before the start...

Corona del Mar high fans were hopeful before the start of the game between Newport Harbor vs. Corona del Mar in a nonleague boys basketball game at Corona del Mar High School on Saturday Jan. 20, 2024. (Photo by Michael Kitada, Contributing Photographer)

NEWPORT BEACH — The Newport Harbor and Corona del Mar boys basketball teams took a night off from their respective league schedules to face off in the annual Battle of the Bay on Saturday at Corona del Mar High School.

While the game’s outcome had no impact on league standings, the crowd that packed into the Sea Kings gym was loud and the contest had the intensity of a CIF championship game.

Thanks in large part to the hot hand of Jack Berry, who led all scorers with 24 points, the Sailors came away with a 58-48 victory.

Berry’s sweet spot appeared to be inside the key, from midrange, where the junior point guard hit three shots in the first quarter.

“I have gained confidence and it just helped me throughout the game,” Berry said. “We go into this game always thinking we’re going to win, no matter who we’re playing. I mean, even in this game, the environment’s crazy. It could go either way, but we know in our hearts that we should win every, single game.”

Berry got better in the second half, scoring 15 points, which included three baskets that gave the Sailors (20-4 overall) their double-digit lead back after the Sea Kings (20-4) had cut the deficit to single digits.

Cole Leinart, who is in his first season with Newport Harbor after transferring from Mater Dei, finished with 13 points.

Leinart described his first Battle of the Bay as being “so fun” and “electric.”

“I have no words,” Leinart said. “It’s honestly awesome. Yeah, it was awesome.”

Corona del Mar freshman Maxwell Scott, who scored a team-high 16 points, and teammate Luke Mirhashemi, who scored 10 points, kept the Sea Kings from falling too far behind.

The teammates scored on back-to-back possessions to get the Sea Kings within seven points with  2 minutes, 20 seconds remaining in the game.

But the CdM hit only one more basket the rest of the way.

Newport Harbor and Corona del Mar are both in Division 2A of the CIF Southern Section where the Sailors are ranked No. 4 and the Sea Kings are No. 6.

The Sailors, who play in the Wave League, are ranked No. 10 in Orange County and the Sea Kings, who are in the Surf League, are ranked No. 14.

The teams have played in the same league in past years and depending on league realignment, they could wing up back in the same league in the future.

“It would be nice for us to be able to explain to the boys that it’s a league game,” Sailors coach Robert Torribio said. “Obviously, it’s a big game for the community and a big game for the kids. It’s a special event for everybody. And we can’t thank all the fans on both sides enough for coming out and having a great time.”

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