AOW: Viking big man crashing boards like no other

December 18, 2001|By ERIC GALVAN

Sports Writer

When Holtville High School basketball player Eric Cueto goes up for a rebound, there's a pretty good chance he'll come down with it.

At 6-foot-3, there aren't many local high-schoolers who can match his size or outrebound him.

On Dec. 11 he proved that as he pulled down 17 boards in leading Holtville to a 56-38 thumping of Vincent Memorial. The 17-year-old senior also finished with a game-high 19 points and five steals.

The week before, he had 17 points and 12 rebounds as the Vikings narrowly got past the Scots 72-67.

"I guess in that first game we played them, we just weren't as prepared and focused as much as we wanted to be," said Cueto. "But I think the second game, we knew what to expect and we were ready for them."


While Cueto is one of the primary scoring options for Holtville, his main asset to the team is as a rebounder.

"When I'm down low I'm always looking to get rebounds. When I'm getting rebounds, I'm just trying not to let the other team go for second shots," Cueto said. "Because I don't have hops I have to use my height as an advantage. So I always have to be in the right position."

What may be helping Cueto this year is the addition of 6-foot-5-inch sophomore Andres Quesada. Knowing Quesada is almost always on the other side of the basket, Cueto has had more opportunities to go for rebounds as defenders can't just try to box out one or the other.

While Cueto may be quiet off the court, Quesada said Cueto lets his actions speak for him on it.

"Eric Cueto is a beast under the basket. He's one savage man. He's just always in position to bring down rebounds," said Quesada. "He's like our power man inside.

"I think having both of us there really makes things easier on us because we can really compliment each other," Quesada said. "During practice we're always going against each other and fighting for rebounds. I think playing against him and with him has toughened me up and has helped me become a better player."

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