On a night it shot only 22% from the field and committed 21 turnovers, Lynwood still managed to defeat Harbor City Narbonne, 54-46, to win the Southern California Regional Division I girls’ basketball championship for the third year in a row Saturday night at Long Beach Arena.
Lynwood (31-1), the defending state champion, will play San Jose Archbishop Mitty for the state championship at 6 p.m. Saturday at Arco Arena in Sacramento.
It is the third consecutive loss to Lynwood for Narbonne (24-7), which won the 2001 state title.
Lynwood, which beat Narbonne earlier this season, 61-45, trailed, 44-40, with less than three minutes left, but Lorie Rayford scored four of the next six points.
Rayford, a 5-foot-11 junior, finished with 19 points.
Lynwood made 26 of 31 free throws, including 11 of its final 14 after trailing 34-33 late in the third quarter.
Sade Wiley-Gatewood added 11 points, making only three of 16 shots.
Lynwood made only 14 of 63 from the field, missing all 14 of its three-point shots.
Narbonne, outrebounded, 51-30, by the smaller Knights, made 15 of 48 shots and only 13 of 20 from the free-throw line.
Jamie Funn scored 12 and Camille LeNoir had 11 for Narbonne.