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Ware-Berry, Regisford honored with All-CIF selections in boys' basketball

Boys' basketball: Providence and Bell-Jeff players proved their worth during their junior years.

March 25, 2013|By Jeff Tully, jeff.tully@latimes.com

Christian Ware-Berry was expected to be the second, or even third, option this past season for the Providence High boys' basketball team.

That's because the Pioneers featured All-State and All-Area Player of the Year Marcus LoVett Jr. However, when LoVett was sidelined with an illness, Ware-Berry stepped in to shoulder the load for Providence.

Then, when LoVett left the team for good before the conclusion of the 2012-13 campaign, Ware-Berry became the team's go-to player.

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Instead of wilting under the pressure, Ware-Berry stepped up and took over the Pioneers, putting up big numbers and leading the team to the playoffs.

Ware-Berry was recognized for his exploits when the All-CIF Southern Section awards were released Monday. The junior earned a spot to the Division V-AA second team.

Bellarmine-Jefferson junior Malcolm Regisford, who was a second-team pick in Division V-AA, was also honored.

With the departure of LoVett, Providence Coach Ernest Baskerville said Ware-Berry was thrust into a very difficult spotlight.

"Christian probably had one of the toughest tasks of any other player in Southern California," Baskerville said. "First of all, he had to play with arguably one of the best players on the planet in Marcus and Christian had to be so efficient because he wasn't going to get that many touches with Marcus handling the ball.

"And Marcus just played 13 games for us, which was only about half the season. And when he left, Christian had to put that all on his back and he had to essentially go from being Robin to being Batman. He had to become our No. 1 guy and I thought he did a great job at that."

Ware-Berry, who earned All-Liberty League first-team honors, played a pivotal role in helping the Pioneers qualify for the postseason. The junior averaged 22.2 points a game to go along with 5.2 rebounds and 1.2 steals.

Earning an All-CIF award is something that Ware-Berry said he wasn't expecting.

"It's just an honor to be recognized," he said. "It's nice to get something like this with all the hard work I put in last summer and during the season. Coming out of my sophomore season I only averaged about six points a game, so to get something like this is really special."

When LoVett was sidelined and eventually departed, Ware-Berry said he didn't feel a lot of pressure to step up and lead the Pioneers.

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