Juju Watkins has immediate effect on Sierra Canyon girls’ basketball

Juju Watkins raises her arms and points her pointer fingers at herself
Juju Watkins of Sierra Canyon was cleared for eligibility by the Southern Section this week and helped the Trailblazers win a tournament championship in Texas.
(Mel Melcon / Los Angeles Times)

Cleared by the Southern Section earlier this week to begin playing after transferring from Windward, Juju Watkins of Sierra Canyon didn’t waste any time in showing why she is the best girls’ basketball player from the class of 2023.

Playing in the McDonald’s Classic in El Paso, Watkins scored 30 points to keep the Trailblazers unbeaten in an overtime thriller on Friday, contributing the game-winning score in a 65-64 victory over Landover Hills (Md.) New Hope Academy. Then she scored 33 points in the championship game in a 63-42 win over Princeton (Texas).

Watkins played for Windward the last two seasons, and her arrival at Sierra Canyon teams her with sophomore standout MacKenly Randolph, who had 17 points and 10 rebounds in the final. Sierra Canyon returns on Saturday to play at Staples Center against New York Christ the King.

Camarillo 60, Arroyo Grande 23: Gabriella Jaquez scored 26 points for 8-0 Camarillo.

Granada Hills 70, Glendora 38: The Highlanders (7-1) received 16 points apiece from Marianne Boco and Emma Perez.

Windward 88, Aliso Niguel 56: The Wildcats continued their success in nonleague games.

Boys’ basketball

Harvard-Westake 78, South Pasadena 42: The unbeaten Wolverines advanced to the championship game of the Maranatha tournament. Cameron Thrower scored 20 points. Harvard-Westlake will face Cajon in the 8 p.m. final. Cajon defeated Oak Park 40-37.


Taft 52, Bakersfield Centennial 50: Isaiah Lewis scored 19 points for 6-1 Taft.

Tesoro 55, Calvary Chapel 42: The Titans improved to 7-0. Carson Brown had 17 points and six rebounds.

Viewpoint 73, Chaminade 56: Giovanni Goree had 20 points, Dylan Holt 17 and Osiris Nalls 16 in the win.

Bishop Alemany 69, Maranatha 67: Nico Ponce scored 35 points to help the Warriors win in double overtime.

Bullard 67, Birmingham 60: Kory Blunt scored 19 points for Birmingham.

St. Bernard 63, Village Christian 60: Deshaun Warren scored 18 points in the overtime loss for Village Christian.

Granada Hills 58, Kennedy 39: Khalil Forrester had 16 points and Ashton Eckert 14.

St. Francis 62, Rocklin Whitney 42: Jake Goldberg led the way with 17 points and Jackson Mosley had 15 points.

Etiwanda 66, Redlands East Valley 52: Curtis Williams scored 18 points for the unbeaten Eagles.

Sherman Oaks Notre Dame 89, Campbell Hall 61: Dusty Stromer finished with 29 points and Ben Shtolzberg had 27 points.

Damien 70, Hesperia 45: Jimmy Oladokun had 16 points in a home opener.

Loyola 62, Dominguez 54: It took overtime for the Cubs to prevail, with Jalen Cox scoring 18 points.

Servite 67, Newport Harbor 41: Tyler Small had 26 points for the 3-0 Friars.

Sun Valley Poly 50, St. Bonaventure 41: Nicholas Romeo Mendoza had 28 points and 12 rebounds for the Parrots.

Colony 57, San Clemente 54: Kollen Murphy had the game-winner as time expired for 5-0 Colony.

Westlake 63, Oxnard 55: River Ortiz had 23 points for the Warriors.

Bishop Montgomery 68, Inglewood 29: Kelcy Phipps 21 points in a Westchester tournament semifinal game.