PASADENA — There isn't much room for error when Rio Hondo League opponents square off against La Cañada High — the usual favorite to win league.
That made it difficult for Blair to compete with the Spartans at home in its league opener Friday without full use of three starters. It didn't help that La Cañada shot the lights out early and rebounded well all night to earn a 62-36 victory at Blair Friday.
Three Vikings starters skipped practice Thursday without notifying Blair Coach Eric Kinley and were benched for the first 13 minutes Friday.
"I think we got a win on Tuesday [over Paloma Valley, 87-74] and kids got complacent," Kinley said. "It's vacation time for them, they're out of school still and they got their feet up, but La Cañada comes serious at all times. Discipline is how you create good programs."
The Spartans (9-6) came out hot and built a 24-7 lead in the first quarter after hitting four three-pointers, Ryan Lee hitting two of them, in the opening eight minutes. It was widened to a 41-17 advantage by halftime after La Cañada out rebounded Blair, 23-8, in the first half and 43-18 in the game.