The Kimball High girls basketball team led nearly the entire way in their 61-46 win over Beyer High of Modesto on Tuesday at Kimball High.
It was a strong start to the Sac-Joaquin Section Division 3 playoffs. The Jaguars (23-5, 10-2 Valley Oak League) played a back-and-forth first quarter against the Beyer Patriots (22-7, 13-1 Western Athletic Conference), but by the end of the first quarter, the Jaguars held a 16-12 lead.
“We came out and, like we tell them all the time, let’s just do what we do, and we took care of business that way,” Kimball coach Mike Granillo said. “They came out and they played hard and that’s all we can ask for. Now we have to prepare for our next opponent.”
The win advances Kimball, the No. 6 seed in the Division 3 bracket, to the quarterfinals, and the team will travel to No. 3 Placer High (21-7, 10-0 Foothill Valley League) on Thursday.
The Jaguars entered the championship tournament knowing that, even in the first round, they would face tough opponents.
“I expected them to be a little bit more hard, and I felt like I came out and gave it my all,” said sophomore forward Breyah Wilson, one the team’s leading rebounders with seven boards for the night. “I learned that I can push myself way harder. My team, they help me be who I am, because I honestly was never post, and now I feel I can do it.”
After taking the lead at the end of the first quarter the Jaguars consistently outshot the Patriots, with sophomore Isabelle Lacap hitting three of her four 3-point shots on the way to a game-high 19 points.
Beyer dialed in its defense in the third quarter, but Kimball freshman Andie Caringal-Holmes stepped up to score 6 points in the third quarter, and junior Dariana Willis was consistent throughout the night to total 14 points.
“I knew that we were going to have to play hard because everyone is out to get us. Everyone wants to be on top,” Willis said. “I feel like we brought hustle. We really wanted it. I learned that, even though we’re a young team, we have a lot of heart and we can do it no matter what.”
Freshman Arianna Rodriguez added 6 points and had two blocks for Kimball and freshman Gianna Riley grabbed eight rebounds and had two steals.
Mountain House 64, Sonora 63
The Mountain House girls pulled off an upset win at Sonora High on Tuesday in the opening round of the Sac-Joaquin Section Division 4 playoffs, defeating the Mother Lode League champion Sonora Wildcats 64-63.
The Mustangs (13-16, 7-7 Western Athletic Conference) went into the playoffs
Mountain House coach Reno Ursal said his team held a slim advantage through the first half, holding a 38-34 lead at halftime.
After that, the Sonora Wildcats (18-7, 9-1 MLL) keyed in on senior Andrea Garcia to limit her effectiveness on offense, and they started to close in. The Wildcats went on a third-quarter scoring run to take the lead before the Mustangs answered with their own scoring run to take the lead back. Ursal said the Sonora team had cut Mountain House’s lead to 64-63 with 12 seconds left but could not make the go-ahead shot at the end, and sophomore Maya Gorman grabbed the rebound to secure the win.
Junior Natalia Moore-Raygoza was the Mustangs’ scoring leader with 24 points by way of eight 3-point shots. Garcia scored 22 points and junior Katelyn Larson scored 9 points.
The Mustangs are on the road Thursday against No. 11 seed El Dorado High of Placerville (14-12, 6-4 Sierra Valley Conference).
Millennium 43, Leroy Greene Academy 41
The Falcons had to make a late push to secure their 43-41 victory at Leroy Greene Academy in Sacramento in the first round of the Sac-Joaquin Section Division 5 playoffs Tuesday.
The Falcons (8-15, 5-3 Central California Athletic Alliance) opened with a 12-6 first-quarter lead and stayed in the lead going into the third quarter. Greene Academy (12-4, 8-0 Northern Pacific Athletic Conference) came back to take a 35-32 lead at the end of the third quarter.
Millennium coach Joe Reyes said that the usual scoring leaders, freshman Maliyah Hutchinson and senior Nayeli Ureno, led the Falcons through the first half, with Ureno hitting three 3-point shots in the second quarter. The Greene Academy team keyed in on the Falcons’ lead players in the second half, but sophomore sisters Kaleena and Mia Orlanes stepped up to hit key shots after Hutchinson fouled out.
Ureno led the Falcons with 15 points, Hutchinson scored 12 points, and Kaleena Orlanes scored 10 points, all in the second half.
The Falcons, the No. 11 seed in SJS Division 6, advance to play No. 3 seed Woodland Christian (22-5, 12-2 Central Valley California League) in Woodland on Thursday.