Girls’ basketball ends season with confidence after CCS loss

March 1, 2011 — by Joanna Lee

After going undefeated in the B division in the El Camino League, girls’ basketball players wanted to extend their dominance to CCS. But their season ended Feb. 24 with a second-round, 50-36 loss to San Mateo.

They started out strong against their first CCS opponent, Hillsdale, with a 58-46 victory on Feb. 22. The win against Hillsdale came as a surprise to many players.

“We won our first round, which was a pretty big deal because I don’t think we were expected to win,” said sophomore guard Hannah Johnson. “[Shriya] Nagpal had a really good game; everyone contributed, but I would say she is the one who did the most damage.”

Despite the absence of their key point guard, the girls still committed to their first game with stellar defense and offense.

“We were a little worried beforehand,” said coach Mike Davey. “[Senior] Arya Parhar was sick with the flu, so [sophomore] Kimberly Chou subbed in, and she played great.”

During the game, Johnson scored 18 points and grabbed 13 rebounds, while Nagpal played strong defense, bringing down 11 rebounds and getting 8 steals.

Senior captain Amber Arroyo said that in the first half of the first game, the team had a bad start. “We were able to motivate ourselves, though, and coach Davey helped motivate us at halftime. So at the second half we just came back and put the other team out in the first two minutes and won.”

The second game proved to be less fortuitous, however, as the lack of focus in the first half led to a loss.

Arroyo said that playing easy opponents in league did not prepare the Falcons for tougher CCS competition.

“In the second half we realized we would lose, so we played our hearts out. Even though we were down by 11 points and even though we lost I don’t think we had any regrets,” she said.

Despite their loss against San Mateo, Davey pointed to some positives.

“Compared to last year’s ‘senior-oriented’ team, this year’s team is full of talented underclassmen,” said Davey. “And our defense definitely helped us a lot during CCS.”

During the season, the team’s major rivals included Milpitas, Pioneer and Fremont High Schools.

After playing with hard offense and defense, the Falcons defeated both Milpitas and Fremont twice, yet lost twice against Pioneer during their preseason games.

Although the girls were disappointed by their CCS loss, they said the season set a positive precedent for future teams.

“We gave it our all,” senior Tasha Patel said. “Even though we came up short, this was a great season that we will all remember.”

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