DIVISION V GIRLS : Christian Scores Final 11 Points, Triumphs
Facing its second-largest deficit and a probable first-round ouster from the Southern California Regional Division V playoffs, the Christian High girls’ basketball team found a spark.
Scoring the final 11 points, Christian defeated Rio Hondo Prep of Arcadia, 63-59, at Valhalla High.
Trailing, 59-52, with 3:02 left, the Patriots’ flurry included seven points in the next 32 seconds to tie it at 59-59. Jenny Culbertson (seven points) made a free throw, Stacey Patsko (27 and 10 rebounds) hit a basket off an offensive rebound, Tiffany Stutz (17 points) scored a layup on a fast break and Patsko had another inside basket.
Thirteen seconds later, after Jennifer Jeremiah (eight points) stole the ball near midcourt, Diana DeGrenier swished a 15-foot set shot from the right wing. Two more free throws by Stutz in the final minute ended the scoring and sealed a second-round playoff date for Christian (22-4) on Thursday.
Christian will face the winner of the Pasadena Poly-Strathmore game.
“I’ll tell you what,” Christian Coach Ken Weeks said, “if we don’t turn it up about 10,000%, we’re in trouble.”
Christian did appear flat at times, but credit a scrappy Rio Hondo team, the Southern Section Division V runner-up, which has only two seniors, no one over 5-foot-9 and finished 22-5.
Junior guard Pauline Hampton led the Kares with 29 points. Junior center Alana Hampton, Pauline’s cousin, had 25 rebounds.
The difference in the game, other than Christian’s magnificent run, was that Pauline Hampton, who couldn’t miss early on, had zero points in the fourth quarter.
“We’re not a zone team, but we had to go to a zone to stop her,” Weeks said.