Spartans clinch share of league title


La Cañada 62, Monrovia 48: The Spartans kept their Rio Hondo League title hopes alive with a road win over Monrovia Thursday night and clinched a share of the title with South Pasadena after Temple City defeated the Tigers, 53-52.

“Our No. 1 goal this year was to win league because that’s something we have more control over,” La Cañada Coach Tom Hofman said. “You get into CIF and you lose a little control.”

Jay Srinivasan had a team-high 21 points coming off seven three-pointers for La Cañada (15-11, 7-3 in league). The Spartans also had 17 points from Darrell Dansby, 10 from Conner Boyd and six each from Ryan Lee and Tim Kim.

La Cañada had even better news waiting after the game when Hofman told his team South Pasadena had lost. The Rams’ win clinched the Spartans a share of the league title for the third straight year and for the 24th time.

“I think if you saw the reaction from the guys when I told them that South Pas lost, it was a relief,” Hofman said. “I think this team has played under a lot of pressure trying to live up to last year’s team [that won a CIF championship]. Hopefully it takes some pressure off and they just go into the playoffs and have some fun. We played a lot better tonight when they thought it was all over.”

La Cañada 5, Monrovia 0: Natalie Ragusa had three goals and two assists in La Cañada’s shutout win Thursday.

Megan Decker had a pair of goals and assists, as well, for the Spartans (12-2-4, 5-1-4 in league), who also got a goal from Morgan Rittichier.

La Cañada finishes the regular season tied for second place with San Marino, but will go into the CIF Southern Section Division VI playoffs as the third seed after going 0-1-1 against the Titans.

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