COSTA MESA — The Costa Mesa High girls' basketball team is doing its best to prepare for Orange Coast League play, which begins in two weeks.
While the losses continue to mount, Coach Nichole Maddox believes her Mustangs are still receiving the proper preparation.
She saw her team take another dose of strong medicine Monday, as El Toro beat Costa Mesa, 58-26, to open the Costa Mesa Winter Classic at the Mustangs' gym.
The Mustangs (2-8) suffered their eighth straight loss. They'll try to end the skid against El Modena today at noon in the 16-team tournament.
"We've been playing tougher competition so far this season," Maddox said. "We want to prepare ourselves for league. We just want to regain focus."
Maddox tried to provide focus for Costa Mesa at halftime when the Mustangs trailed, 38-11.
"I just told them to be more vocal on the floor, to talk on defense," she said. "I wanted them to do the things we do in practice."
Maddox said the Mustangs played better in the second half. They also outscored El Toro in the fourth quarter, 10-4.
Sophomore Marilyn Armstrong and senior Annie Sturm finished with seven points each to lead Costa Mesa.
Armstrong, a guard, is the Mustangs' leading scorer averaging 13 points per game.
— From staff reports
Costa Mesa 59, Yucca Valley 39
TEMECULA — Senior Andrew Albers scored 11 points for the Mustangs in a pool-play game of the Linfield Christian Tournament.
Junior Nick Hefner had 10 points and Junior Saaeed El Assadi had 11 rebounds and six points for Costa Mesa (4-7).
The Mustangs will face Rubidoux today at 6:30 p.m. at Linfield Christian High.
Estancia 56, Santa Ana 40
GARDEN GROVE — Kassie Stratton scored 17 of her 22 points in the first half for the Eagles in a first-round game of the Garden Grove Tournament Monday.
Celia Duran scored 13 points and Yessenia Maldonado added 10 points for Estancia (8-4).
The Eagles will face Rosary today at 1:30 p.m. at Garden Grove High.
Corona del Mar 37, Century 34
GARDEN GROVE — Senior Kayla Marolt led the Sea Kings with 11 points in their first-round game of the Garden Grove Tournament Monday.
Senior Daniela Gallardo added nine points for CdM (8-4).
The Sea Kings will face Pacifica today at 6 p.m. at Garden Grove High.