SANTA BARBARA, Calif. -
L.A. Valley started fast and never let up on Wednesday night in a 70-50 first-round win over SBCC in the Southern Cal Regional women's basketball playoffs.
The 18th-seeded Monarchs (16-13) avenged an early 80-56 loss at SBCC in the sixth game of the year and spoiled the Vaqueros' first trip to the playoffs in seven years. The 15th-seeded Vaqueros finish the season at 15-9.
The Monarchs jumped out to a 12-4 lead and took an 18-9 advantage after one quarter. They outshot the Vaqueros 58.3% (7-12) to 28.6% (4-14) while winning the second quarter 18-10.
Valley ended the first half on a 9-0 run, capped by an improbable, buzzer-beating bank of 8 feet by Janelle Jiron.
Brianna Torres led the Monarchs with 20 points and six rebounds. Jiron added 14 points and Rebecca Castillo hit 4-11 from 3-point range and tossed in 13 points with seven rebounds off the bench.
Valley substitued at a furious pace and played solid defense all night, outshooting the Vaqueros 43.9 to 34.7%.
"We had a great year and losing a playoff doesn't diminish that fact," said SBCC coach Sandrine Krul. "We didn't shoot well and we played very hard. You have to hit shots in big games and we couldn't find the bucket. All nine players left everything out on the court and they will forever remember this 2019-20 season."
Sophomore point guard Alondra Jimenez scored 14 of her 17 points in the second half of final game as a Vaquero. She also had seven rebounds and five assists. Jordan Parkhurst added 10 points and Sophia Torres had nine points and six boards.
The Vaqueros were also in foul trouble early with Jimenez getting two fouls in the first 4:10 of play and Torres being whistled for three fouls in a span of 2:40 midway through the second quarter.
Valley stretched the lead to 20 points (43-23) when Castillo nailed a corner 3 with 5:29 to go in the third. The Vaqueros cut the deficit to 14 (48-34) on a triple by Parkhurst and two free throws by Jimenez. But Castillo responded with back-to-back 3-pointers, pushing the lead back up to 20 points, 54-34, with 35 seconds left in the third period.
The Vaqueros had to endure 36 days without playing a game from Dec. 20 to Jan. 25 after Cuesta and L.A. Pierce dropped their teams in December and WSC schedule makers had to scramble to revamp it to a 5-team conference schedule.
"We fought through adversity all year and this team fought hard to make the playoffs," said Krul. "That will be their legacy. I'm very proud of this team."
Article courtesy of SBCC Athletics