By Alfonso Rivera
The host Huskies defeated Cerritos College, 72-62, Wednesday Feb. 29, moving them closer to reaching the final four of the state championships next week in Sacramento.
The Huskies will play a familiar conference opponent in the regional finals in Mt. San Antonio College. For the second week in a row, it will be a rubber-match between conference rivals; this time much more will be at stake.
The Mounties, the SCC champions and the No. 1-seed in the south region, will host the Huskies Saturday, March 3, at 7 p.m.
The two teams split their two previous meetings, each winning on their home floor. The Mounties took the first game, 74-64, on January 11th. The Huskies responded a month later with a 77-71 win, handing the Mounties their only conference loss of the season.
In the third round playoff victory over Cerritos, the Huskies were led by first team All-State selection, Keyanna Johnson, who scored 22 points.
Third team All-State selection Jamie Robinson scored 19 points and added 17 rebounds in the win. Sophomore Dominique Scott’s gritty and hustle play resulted in 11 points and 11 rebounds.
The Falcons were led by the freshman tandem of Marissa Rendon, who scored 15 points, and Talor Hixon who scored 10 points and grabbed five rebounds. Sophomore Armelia Patterson added 9 points and six rebounds in the loss.
The Huskies fell behind early against Cerritos trailing 18-10 at the 11:42 mark after an 8-0 Falcon run. It was the largest lead of the game for Cerritos.
The Huskies answered back with an 8-0 run themselves. Johnson made a three-point basket to even up the score at 18-18, at 7:17.
The Huskies took their first lead of the game when Dominique Scott scored a lay up putting them ahead 27-25. They maintained their strong play and headed into halftime with the lead 34-28.
The second half started with the Huskies jumping to their biggest lead of the game, at 47-34, after a Johnson lay-up. The Falcons answered right back cutting the deficit to six points, 53-47, at 7:17, after a Patterson three-point basket.
Sophomore guard Aires McCarther came up big at a crucial time in the game connecting on a three-point basket to give the Huskies a 59-50 lead, at 3:23. Rendon connected on a three-point basket at 1:18, to cut the the Husky lead to 62-55. The Falcons would get no closer as the Huskies closed with a 10-7 run winning, 72-62.
Following the game sophomore’s Scott and Robinson were asked about the team’s play and their chances against the Mounties. “As long as we prepare like we did tonight, we can beat anybody,” said Robinson. Scott added, “We expect to win, it’s playoff time. We just have to dig deep.”
The history making season continues for the Lady Huskies. Saturday’s outcome against Mt. SAC will determine if they can add another chapter to this storybook season.