The Millennium High girls basketball team secured its place in the Sac-Joaquin Section playoffs with a 51-36 win over Venture Academy on Thursday at West High.
The Falcons (7-15, 5-3 Central California Athletic Alliance) had been in a tie for second place in the league with the Venture Academy Mustangs (8-12, 4-4 CCAA) and knew that the winner of Thursday’s game would take the No. 2 spot and advance to the playoffs.
The win made up for Millennium’s 55-50 loss in overtime to Venture Academy on Jan. 19. This time the Falcons went into it expecting to play a much more competitive game.
“I had very good confidence going into this game,” said freshman Maliyah Hutchinson. “We did really good last time, but we went into overtime and lost by 5, and I knew that this time we would play so much better because we built our confidence and got better as a team.”
The crucial game started off as a close contest, with the Mustangs up 15-13 at the end of the first quarter. The Falcons pulled ahead 24-20 at the half.
The Falcons came out hot in the third quarter to hit three 3-point shots, including two for sophomore Kaleena Orlanes as she scored 8 of her 11 total points in the third. Senior Nayeli Ureno also scored 6 of her team-high 16 points in the third, and by the end of the quarter the Falcons were up 41-26.
“Last game we tied (in regulation), so we thought it was going to be tough,” Ureno said. “But then we had a lot of confidence, never gave up, and we tried our hardest, so we ended up winning.”
Hutchinson finished with 16 points and 10 rebounds, plus two steals and two assists, and Orlanes and Ureno had six rebounds each.
The Falcons last made the playoffs in 2016, when Ureno was a freshman on the varsity team. This year she is the only senior on the team and has enjoyed being a leader for a younger team.
“It was tough and fun at the same time,” she said, “but then we learned how to work as a team and it got great as the season went on.”
Playoff brackets for basketball will be released on Saturday afternoon, and the Falcons will play in Division 5 or Division 6.
Mountain House 65, Pacheco 31
The Mountain House girls closed their regular season with a 65-31 win at Pacheco High on Thursday.
Senior Andrea Garcia scored 13 points, establishing a Mountain House High single-season record of 483 points and a career record of 1,314 points.
Junior Natalia Raygoza-Moore led the Mustang offense with 19 points, and senior Taylor Tameta-Arenas and junior Katelyn Larson scored 7 points each.
The Mustangs (12-16, 7-7 Western Athletic Conference) have finished the season tied for fourth place in the WAC with Johansen of Modesto, but their strength of schedule makes them the No. 14 team in the MaxPreps.com Sac-Joaquin Section Division 4 rankings and gives them a chance to advance to the playoffs as an at-large team.
Teams that make the top 15 in the MaxPreps rankings can advance as at-large teams, and Friday night’s final league games will determine whether Mountain House maintains its place in the top 15 in SJS Division 4. Playoff brackets will be released Saturday afternoon.
Tracy 42, West 32
The Tracy girls beat the Wolf Pack 42-32 in the last game of the season for both teams.
The Bulldogs took over in the second quarter to hold a 22-10 lead at the half and were up 29-11 before the Wolf Pack got back to matching their pace.
West ended up outscoring Tracy in the second half but was never able to get closer than 10 points.
Junior Carly Winters scored 8 points for Tracy, sophomore Kayla Vieira scored 7 points and junior Renee Jones scored 6 points.
West senior Alexia Croffet scored all of her 9 points in the second half, sinking 7 of 12 free throws, and junior Melisa Toilolo also scored 9 points for West.
Tracy won the junior varsity game 52-19, and Tracy won the freshman game 60-18
Tracy freshmen undefeated in TCAL
The Tracy High freshman girls basketball team’s 60-18 win over West High on Thursday completed a season in which the team went 21-1 overall and 10-0 against Tri-City Athletic League opponents.
During the full season, the Tracy freshmen outscored opponents by an average of 51-24, and they outscored all their TCAL opponents by 20 points or more. Tracy’s leading scorer, Kelli Rickman, averaged 16.5 points per game. Alec Carillo averaged 7.5 points per game, and Allison Kee averaged 7 points per game.