Everyone needs a good cousin.
Not the cousin you see once a year at the family reunion. Or the cousin that swears you owe him money from three years ago.
But the cousin who knows you broke your mom’s favorite vase when you were 4 years old. The cousin who remem- bers your first crush. The cousin who isn’t afraid to let you know your breath stinks or needs a haircut.
Those cousins are more like siblings. That’s what the Las Positas men’s basket- ball team has coming off its bench in Isaiah and Domonick Victor. Cousins who are more like brothers. Ride or die.
The Victor cousins have been inter- twined since they were kids. So it only makes sense they reached the pinnacle of their basketball lives together. Isaiah and Domonick, Zay and Dom, bonded by blood and jersey, made it to the state championship together. This was almost predictable based on their lives.
Their connection, developed over a life- time, was a huge reason for the Hawks’ success. It certainly is a shining example of the chemistry Las Positas men’s basketball has used to get the furthest the school has ever gone. Both players offer the Hawks the jolt of energy they need off the bench.
The Hawks didn’t have one star. They didn’t lean on an exclusive style. Every game it seemed a different player was leading the charge. Their 27 wins came in a variety of ways. But the one consis- tent element was their togetherness. Their strength was in their bond. They made it as far as they did because their attack comes from all over. They embody the idea of a team as they do everything as a collective.
The Victor boys not only illustrated the team’s chemistry, but they were a source of it. They infused the roster with it. Even as they went into the biggest game in school history, they were as unified as ever. Their mindsets were in lockstep, focused on one thing: a title. Nothing meant more to these two than holding up the state champion- ship trophy.
That pursuit is expected to continue next season as they potentially take on even more prominent roles.
“Winning is all that matters right now,” Isaiah said as Dom nodded in agreement. “That’s what we focused on.”
Domonick and Isaiah are naturally com- petitive. They love competing at just about anything, from one-on-one hoops to facing off in NBA 2K.
When the Victors were younger, they would routinely go at it in the backyard at whatever family function brought them together. These games were for bragging rights and to see who really was the best Victor in the family.
It was all fun and games until, one day, Domonick and Isaiah got into it after one of their infamous one-on-ones. According to family members, they got into each other’s faces and almost came to blows until their fight got broken up.
But what came out of that moment was a realization. A realization that their com- petitiveness can help each other on the basketball court. And since then, they have beencloserthanever.
“Their relationship is very close,” said Isaiah’s father Sylvon. “They’re extremely tight.”
Domonick and Isaiah spent much of their childhood on different sides of the country. Domonick spent many of his elementary and middle school years on the east coast while Isaiah lived in the Central Valley of California. When Domonick entered high school, he moved to California and attended Manteca High School with Isaiah.
Once high school hit, the Victors spent more time with each other on the court. They would spend winters playing high school ball at Manteca and spend the spring and summer playing AAU for Lion’s TruthBasketball.
After high school, the two spent some time apart for a bit. Domonick would attend Howard University for a year and come back to the west coast to play for Ascending Life Academy, a post grad prep school in Chandler, Arizona.
The two would come back together for the 2021-22 season at Las Positas when they were recruited by Head Coach James Giacomazzi.
Though they are cousins, they both play a different style of basketball.
Isaiah is your classic 3-and-D wing. He is constantly looking for his 3-point shot in transition and is often tasked with picking up the opposing team’s best wing. He shot the 3-ball to a tune of 39.2% this year while averaging 7.6 points per game.
Domonick is a pure athlete who is always looking for a dunk or a putback. His energy alone gives the Hawks an edge on the defensive end as well as in transition. He shot 52.5% from the field this year and was no stranger to dunking on someone in the fast break.
Though they might have different games on the court, off the court, they’re essentially the same person. They listen to the same music, watch the same shows and workout at the same times. The only place they might be different is when it comes to putting food on the plate.
“Look, I’m picky, but he’s way more picky than me when it comes to food,” said Domonick as he points to Isaiah and laughs.
Teammates notice that they are also the same as well. In the locker room, the Victor boys are infamous for cracking jokes and poking fun at each other.
When asked about the funniest guys in the locker room, sophomore Dathan Satchell said “I would probably say Domonick and Isaiah Victor, them boys funny as hell.”
When they were on the court this year, the two gave the Hawks’ energy that they needed off the bench. The two’s mix of athleticism and shooting gave the Hawks’ an offensive and defensive punch that most
teams don’t have coming off the bench. “Dom and Isaiah play a big role in givingus energy,” said Giacomazzi.
Earlier this year, the Hawks played apreseason game against Sacramento City College and the Victor brothers went off. The two combined for 35 points which gave the Hawks a 12 point win at home.
“It was probably my favorite moment of the season,” said Isaiah. “I love seeing him do well and he likes seeing me do well.”
Though the Hawks’ season ended, the two will be back in Livermore next year, poised to be key contributors with starting roles. The rare mix of shooting and ath- leticism that the Victor boys present when they’re on the floor is hard to find.
While the Hawks will have to find replacements for positions in other areas, the Victor boys will have the wing spots locked down. Their natural competitive- ness will elevate the Hawks’ on both ends of the floor and their chemistry will play a big role in the team’s cohesiveness next year.
“We have great chemistry coming in, so it fits well with the team,” said Isaiah.