The first round of the Southern Section boys' basketball playoffs began Wednesday, and in Orange County, there were a few seeded teams that held form, and two underdogs from the Century League that showed their bite.
Leading the upsets was El Modena (9-18), which finished last in the Century League but took down sixth-seeded Rancho Alamitos (20-5), the champion of the Garden Grove League, 55-54. Austin Payne scored 18 points and Luke Volk 10 as the Vanguards overcame a 43-39 deficit heading into the fourth quarter of the 3AA contest.
In Division 3AAA, Brea Olinda (16-12), an at-large team that finished fifth in the seven-team Century League, scored a 60-50 victory at 10th-seeded Woodbridge (19-8) as Adam Williams scored 13 and Michael Turner 10. Brea pulled away with about three minutes remaining and the score tied at 48-48.
Several county teams that were favored held serve, including No. 5 Tustin, which defeated Sonora, 65-48, and No. 6 Esperanza, which defeated Covina South Hills, 73-47.
In Division 3AA, No. 7 Servite defeated Santa Ana Valley, 68-41, and No. 14 Garden Grove Pacifica beat Northwood, 48-41.
In Division 3A, fourth-seeded Santa Margarita won at La Puente, 67-35, fifth-seeded Corona del Mar beat Laguna Hills, 63-41, and No. 14 Estancia beat Covina Gladstone, 44-43, in overtime.
In Division 4AA, 10th-seeded JSerra defeated Orange Coast League champion Laguna Beach, 48-33, behind Reece Lemon's 15 points.
In Division 4A, 10th-seeded Fairmont Prep defeated Los Angeles Verbum Dei, 65-60, and No. 16 Costa Mesa beat Santa Monica St. Monica Catholic, 46-22, to set up a game against top-seeded West Hollywood Pacific Hills on Friday, when the second round of playoffs resume for these divisions.