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Life with the Bruins

Lane and UCLA will visit Cal and Stanford in early January
By: Russ Edmondson, The Placer Herald
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Former Rocklin High basketball star Brendan Lane will be coming back to Northern California soon as the UCLA Bruins are set to visit Cal and Stanford. UCLA will play at the Bears on Jan. 7 (7:30 p.m.) and the Cardinal on Jan. 9 (3 p.m.). “I’m definitely (looking forward to) coming up north and hopefully a lot friends can come,” said Lane, who also starred in water polo and track and field at Rocklin. Entering the weekend the 6-foot-9, 205-pound freshman forward had played in eight of the first nine games for the Bruins (3-6). Lane is averaging 9.1 minutes, 2.4 points and 1.3 rebounds while collecting two blocks and shooting 8-of-15 (.533) from the floor. His minutes started to increase last week because of a shoulder injury to UCLA senior forward James Keefe. Lane averaged 22.1 points, 12.1 rebounds and 4.8 blocks for the Thunder during his senior season in 2008-09. He played four varsity seasons for Rocklin and the Thunder went 113-16 during that time and advanced deep into the playoffs each year. He was named the MVP of the Sierra Foothill League after his junior and senior seasons. Lane suffered a high ankle sprain at UCLA, which kept him from practicing in November. “It set me back a while and for a few weeks I was completely off it,” said Lane, who says he is healthy now. “And getting back in shape was difficult and now I tape it up and wear braces.” His former basketball coach, Rocklin High varsity coach Steve Taylor, thinks Lane would be playing more now if not for that injury. Taylor stays in contact with Lane on a weekly basis. “I think him getting injured in the fourth practice, being out two-to-three weeks, was a tough break for him,” Taylor said. “It put him behind as they were getting started and I think he is now feeling better and it’s puzzling to me how he isn’t able to get more playing time on that team with the skills he has and also with his work ethic. He’s being patient.” “Brendan is such an even keel kid – he says all the right things and I think he probably means him. He’s a little disappointed that he is not playing more but he’s a great kid and a team guy and he’s disappointed that they are losing.” Lane says he is getting better and he thinks the team can improve. “We’re bummed (about the record) but we just have to work harder and focus everyday in practice,” said Lane, who turned 19 in November. “Everyday in practice is making me tougher and stronger . . . and I feel like I know the offense really well and the movements and the whole concepts.”