Crespi’s Joe Sterling, 4-Star 2026 Basketball Prospect, Transferring to Harvard-Westlake

Sterling is transferring from Encino Crespi to the school that defeated his team in the Mission League end-of-season tournament.
Joe Sterling, a coveted prep recruit who plays in the greater Los Angeles area, is changing schools.
Joe Sterling, a coveted prep recruit who plays in the greater Los Angeles area, is changing schools. / Justin Fine, SBLive Sports

By Tarek Fattal

Joe Sterling, a 4-star 2026 basketball prospect in Southern California, is transferring from Encino Crespi to Studio City Harvard-Westlake, Wolverines coach David Rebibo confirmed with SBLive Sports.

Sterling has been Crespi’s top scorer the last two seasons. The skilled sharpshooter averaged 18.8 points per game as a freshman and poured in 20.9 points per contest as a sophomore. He shot 48% from the field and 43% from downtown this past season.

Sterling led the Celts and first-year coach Derek Fisher on a spirited run in the Mission League end-of-season tournament. His game-winning three-pointer with no time remaining to defeat Sierra Canyon on the road, 64–61 in overtime, put Crespi into the tournament final where it fell to Harvard-Westlake, 72-54.

VIDEO: Crespi's Joe Sterling hits game-winner to stun No. 1 Sierra Canyon in OT - Sports Illustrated High School News, Analysis and More

The 6-foot-5 guard has a mild demeanor, a relentless work ethic and a polished jumpshot. Those attributes have helped him garner offers from Washington, UC Santa Barbara, San Francisco and Colorado State.

Harvard-Westlake, the two-time CIF State Open Division champions of boys basketball in California, lost McDonald’s All-American Trent Perry and Harvard University commit Robert Hinton to graduation.

All eyes will be on 2025 star Nik Khamenia, who’s currently competing in the FIBA World Championships with the U18 USA team. Khamenia is a 4-star recruit as of now, but could be a 5-star prospect by the winter. Gonzaga, Kansas, North Carolina, Kansas, UCLA, among many others, have already offered the 6-foot-8 forward.

STORY:Nik Khamenia, 4-star 2025 recruit, shines on national stage at Hoophall Classic - Sports Illustrated High School News, Analysis and More

Khamenia and Sterling will lead a spattering of unproven role players and underclassmen that will have to step up in the upcoming 2024-25 season. Isaiah Carroll (2025), Dominique Bentho (2026) and Amir Jones (2026) played significant minutes on last year’s Harvard-Westlake team that won the CIF treble—the Southern Section championship, Southern California regional crown, and state title.


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