BURROUGHS HIGH — There is something about playing at the Valencia High Five Classic that seems to bring out the best in Lisha Elsenbach.
Or maybe it’s the Valencia High gym that the Burroughs High senior girls’ basketball player enjoys.
“I think she really likes that gym,” Burroughs Coach Vicky Oganyan said.
Whatever the reason, Elsenbach has put on dominating performances in the tournament the last two year.
Last season, she scored a school-record 46 points against Royal in the championship game of the tournament. Unfortunately, the Indians fell in the title game, 79-69, in double overtime.
Burroughs again made it to the championship game Saturday in the 2010 installment of the event. Elsenbach poured in 30 points and had 10 rebounds and seven assists.
Her performance this time, however, didn’t come in a losing effort, as the Indians defeated the Highlanders, 59-47, to capture the tourney crown.
For her efforts, Elsenbach earned tournament most valuable player honors for the second straight year.
“She has really been playing well to start out the season,” Oganyan said of Elsenbach. “She has not only been shooting well, but she’s passing the ball very well.”
Elsenbach is averaging 7.5 assists a game.
Oganyan said her team was motivated after falling in the title game in 2009.
“I think our kids just really, really wanted it,” she said. “They were going after every one of our missed shots. It seemed that whenever we missed a shot we were able to come up with the rebound.”
Burroughs had 41 rebounds in the game.
The Indians (4-0) were able to take control if the game in the second quarter, outscoring the Highlanders, 20-12, to take a 27-21 lead at the half.
Burroughs began the third quarter on a 9-0 run to take a 36-21 advantage.
Aysia Shellmire had 11 points and seven rebounds, Chelsea Rhamdeow had four points, eight rebounds, and four steals and Shannon Kermah had five points and six rebounds.
Burroughs began the tournament with a 56-47 victory against Bakersfield Stockdale. Rhamdeow had 20 points and Elsenbach added 18.
The Indians then defeated Palmdale Knight, 57-37, as Elsenbach had 20 points and 11 assists.
Burroughs received 11 points from Shellmire and 10 points and 11 rebounds from Elsenbach in a 43-30 win against Saugus.
Oganyan said although her players were happy to win the tournament title, they know they still have a long season ahead of them.
“The players we have are mature,” Oganyan said. “They were excited about it, but they don’t want to make this the highlight of their season.”
The Indians have some time off until they open their own tournament at 7:30 p.m. Dec. 16 against Venice.