Kile Kleiner was red-hot in the first half on Friday night but SBCC went cold in the second half of a 73-55 loss to L.A. Valley in the Western State Classic at Bakersfield College.
Kleiner, a 6-5 freshman from Hayward, Calif., hit 9-14 from the field and 4-6 from long distance in the first half and scored 27 of his season-high 34 points. The Vaqueros hit 44.4% in the opening half and trailed by just one, 35-34.
Kleiner finished with 34 points on 10-20 field-goal shooting, 5-11 on 3's and 9-11 free throws. He also had five rebounds and five steals. Kleiner is averaging 26.8 points in his last four games and 18.7 for the season, which is second in the WSC North and 20th in the state.
The Vaqueros (3-12) were outshot 65.2% to 21.4% in the second half and outscored 38-21. The Monarchs (9-7) dominated the backboards, 47-22.
Joseph Holden had 10 points and six rebounds in the second half for the Vaqueros. The freshman guard finished with 12 points and seven boards.
Micah Cooper led the Monarchs with 19 points and 10 rebounds. Christian Hodge added 18 points, 12 rebounds and five of his team's eight blocked shots.
Santa Barbara will take on Glendale on Saturday at 5 p.m. in a "Battle of the Vaqueros" at the Gil Bishop Sports Center in Bakersfield.