The Boy’s Basketball’s historic season caps off


Madeline Marshall

Daniel Ortiz shoots a first quarter three vs. Del Norte 2/28/23

The Buena Bulldogs Boys Basketball completed a historic season Friday, Mar. 10 following a loss in the Division III State Championship against the Oakland Wildcats.

This season was unlike anything that the Buena Boys’ Basketball program has ever experienced as they accomplished many record breaking feats including breaking the team record for most wins in a single season in Buena Boys Basketball history at 31-6, the previous record was 25 wins.

Players on the team felt that this squad was very special, one of those players being junior center Luke Ortiz. “This team is a family,” Ortiz said. “The team chemistry we had was off the charts and was truly special and is the reason we won that many games.”

This can easily be backed up, as the Bulldogs could not stop winning. In the season, they beat their rival, the Ventura Cougars not once, but twice, sweeping them in the season series. In another notable regular season game, they took another win against Pacifica on senior night with a crushing score of 70-37.

Then, the playoffs came. In the CIF playoffs, Buena went 3-0 all the way up until the semi-finals, where they unfortunately lost 82-59 to Saint Pius, who ended up in CIF Division III second place.

This team is a family, the team chemistry we had was off the charts and was truly special and is the reason we won that many games.

— Luke Ortiz

This would not be the end to the basketball season for them however, as they faced the state playoffs. It kicked off with a game against Del Norte. Buena somewhat narrowly defeated them 72-66 with help from a 25 point performance by senior guard Daniel Ortiz. 

This sparked a massive momentum flame that seemed unstoppable as the Bulldogs would defeat both La Jolla and Camarillo. 

This would bring them out to play Culver City in the State semifinals, with the chance to play in Sacramento. The game, which could be described as electric, lasted into three overtimes, with Luke Ortiz scoring a game tying buzzer beater in one of them. Buena finished off the incredible game with a score of 82-79, having Daniel Ortiz and senior forward Zane Carter both scoring over 20 points.

This would bring them to the last game of their season, the game against the Oakland Wildcats played in the same arena as the NBA’s Sacramento Kings. Everyone in Ventura County had their back for this game and were pulling for them to do well. 

“It felt very special to get support from everyone from Ventura County,” Luke Ortiz said. “Even Coach Felix, Ventura high school’s basketball coach, was able to set the rivalry aside and show his support to us.”

Unfortunately, the season would end with a loss as the Bulldogs fell to the Wildcats 43-59. 

This game was nothing for them to hang their heads at, as they made it further than any other public school in Ventura County team in history. This team will definitely not be forgotten anytime soon.

“What made this team so special was the bond we built with each other on and off the court,” Daniel Ortiz said. “Every game we stuck together no matter what.”