Casa Grande High School's boys basketball team had to battle just to get into the North Central League Division II playoffs, and got no bargain once it was admitted to the exclusive club.
Casa, 14-13 on the season going into the game, was paired against No. 1 seed Newark Memorial, now 21-7, in its opener Tuesday night, and was no match for the powerful Cougars, losing, 62-33.
Casa fell behind early, and was never able to really get into the game. At the end of the first period, Newark Memorial led, 18-5, and by the first-half buzzer held a 41-12 advantage.
Showing hope for the future, sophomore Jon Christy led Casa Grande with 14 points. Cetrick Yeanay added eight with Jake Ielmorini scoring two, Jack Micco one, Brycen Poarch two, Kyle Kaupe four and Drew Busse two.
Montgomery from the North Bay League defeated Washington from Fremont, 52-39, in its opener and will play at home Friday night against College Park.
Ukiah, also from the NBL, lost at Concord, 67-58.
Newark Memorial, with its win, advances to a quarterfinal game on its home court Saturday afternonoon against Las Lomas, a 76-69 winner over Pinole Valley.
Casa compiled a 7-7 record in its first NBL season.