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Culver City held off a late charge by Mira Costa to win their first CIF-SS title in 25 years with a 56-49 victory in the Division II-AA title game.
The Centuars had a 16 point lead in the third quarter before the Mustangs rallied back to take a 45-44 lead on a pair of free throws by Allie Navarette.
A free throw by Kelsey Udea was followed up by a Kailey Tooke layup as Culver City regained a lead it would never surrender.
It took a day later than expected but Culver City’s girls’ basketball team has an opponent for the 2AA title as Mira Costa defeated Redondo 40-33, Wednesday night.
The game between the two South Bay teams was originally schedule for Tuesday but was moved the following night as the Redondo hosted an Boys’ Basketball Open Division Semifinals.
Culver City beat Norco on Tuesday to advance to the championship game which will be held at Godinez High School in Santa Ana. Tipoff is scheduled for 8 p.m.
It is a surprise for both team to be playing for a CIF title based on their seeding. Culver City is the seeded seventh while Mira Costa is the eighth-seed.
Culver City will have a second chance at a CIF title as they went on the road to beat No. 3 seed Norco 68-55 in the Division 2AA semifinals on Tuesday.
Kelsey Ueda had 22 points and nine rebounds for the Centuars while Michelle Curry finished with 20 points and 11 rebounds before fouling out late in the fourth quarter.
The Centaurs had the advantage throught the entire game as they held a narrow lead at the end of each quarter, including being up 26-21 at halftime.
Six westside girls’ basketball teams are still alive in the playoffs with five having a change to earn a spot in a sectional final.
Fairfax, lead by junior Marguerite Effa, is looking to get back to the LA City Division I title game for the third straight year. Palisades will have to get past two-time city champs Narbonne for the other spot.
Westchester is hoping to upset No. 1 seed Roosevelt and return to the Division II finals, while University will be looking to do the same against Bell.
In the Southern Section, top-seed Brentwood travel to Cantwell-Sacred Heart in the IV-A semifinals and Culver City host Foothill in the II-AA quarterfinals.
Below are the today’s games and times.
Three Culver City players finished in double figures as Centuars advanced to the Division II-AA quarterfinals in a 58-36 victory over Eisenhower on Wednesday.
Katie Lin had a team-high 13 points for Culver City (26-4). Michelle Curry had a double-double with 12 points and 12 rebounds and Kelsey Ueda also finished with 12 points.
After upsetting seventh-seeded Westminster in the first round of the playoffs, Culver City was trying to capitalize with another shocker that would have qualified them for a spot in the state tournament.
But instead, they could not overcome some costly mistakes that led to a 76-68 defeat to Westlake, Tuesday night in the Division II-AA playoffs.
Centaurs head coach Adam Eskridge has not made it past the second round of the playoffs in the nine years he has been coaching staff at the school. He will have to wait another year to find out.
Culver City had an easy time to begin the Division II-AA playoffs with a 75-47 home victory over Elsinore on Saturday.
The seventh-seeded Centaurs had a double-digit lead throughout most of the game and held an 18 point advantage at halftime.
Michelle Curry led Culver City with 23 points and Kailey Tooke added 11 points.
Culver City won its 30 consecutive Ocean League game in a row as they closed out the regular season in a 63-18 victory over Beverly Hills at the Swim Gym on Thursday.
Senior transfer Michelle Curry had 16 of her 18 points on the first half for the Centaurs.
It is a huge difference for her time at St. Bernard where they faced top teams Bishop Montgomery and Serra in the Del Rey League and lost to Windward in the CIF-SS Division IV-AA semifinals.
Culver City continued their dominance in the Ocean League, as they won their eighth consecutive game in a 56-32 victory over Santa Monica, Wednesday night.
The Centaurs expanded on a 22-20 halftime lead with a barrage of three-pointers and some aggressive defense.
Kelsey Ueda had a game-high 21 points and Michelle Curry added 14 points for Culver City (19-5, 7-0 Ocean League)
Nicole Rosenbach led Santa Monica (6-12, 1-6) with 11 point for the Vikings and Amanda Foshag had five.
Their championship hopes were almost dashed after blowing a 15-point lead, but Santa Monica was able to hold and have a chance at another Ocean League title.
The Vikings endured a second half surge by Culver City to come away with a 68-55 victory that set them up for a showdown with rival Beverly Hills on Friday night.
Santa Monica saw their lead evaporate to 56-50 midway through the fourth quarter before they started clamping down and finally pulling away for the victory.
Jonah Mathews, who finished the game with 23 points, hit a pair of three-pointers that put them up by seven late in the fourth quarter.
Two plays later Mikhail Brown was fouled after making a lay-up putting them up by ten with 1:28 remaining in the game.
Culver City scored the first nine points of the game and had little trouble holding off Beverly Hills in a 73-21 victory at Goodyear Gym.
The Centaurs got a break on their opening possession when two consecutive shots missed the rim but the 24 shot clock horn did not sound allowing Michelle Curry to grab the offensive rebound and score for the early lead.
Not that Culver City needed the help.
Kelsey Udea had nine her 16 points in the first quarter and by the time Jessica Melamed made Beverly’s only basket in the period, the Centaurs had already amassed a 29-5 lead.
The Centaurs may have found their third scorer in their latest tournament.
Shooting guard Chris Edwards was sidelined after rolling his ankle in the first game of the Seahawk Classic at Redondo, which forced him to sit out leaving Armani Nicolis and someone else to pick up the scoring load in their already inefficient offense.
Isaac Girley stepped up and was that someone.
With the first-ever Los Angeles Sports Journal All-Westside football team set to be announced sometime next week, we are asking our readers who do they think should be the “Westside Football Player of the Year”.
Below is a list of the top players from eight separate schools (six offensive and two defensive) who made the cut along with their season stats.
Among the offensive players are Kwame Duggins of Santa Monica, Stanley Norman of Culver City, Alexander Diamont of Venice, Austin Webster of Windward, Myles Bowen of Fairfax, and Joey Velez of Palisades
On defense are Jameal Baker of University and Anthony Spinner of Hamilton.
Let us know what you think and the results of the fan favorite will be shown when the All-Westside team is announced next week.
Update: Voting will close on Friday, January 3rd at 11:59 p.m. PST.
Thank you all for voting. The poll is now closed.
Please check out the announcement schedule for the LA Sports Journal’s All-Westside Football Team.
Boys Basketball Roundup: Westchester’s Elijah Stewart has 37 points; Azzam one victory short of tying LA City record
Elijah Stewart had the hot hand for Westchester and the Comets needed every point in a 66-58 over St. Edward (OH) to advance to the semifinals of the MaxPreps Holiday Classic.
The LMU-signee had 37 points and eight rebounds while making four-five shots from behind-the-arc. He had 21 points at halftime.
Layon Gooden also finished in double-figures for the Comets with 13 points.
The victory puts head coach Ed Azzam only one victory behind Willie West for the most wins in LA City Section history. Azzam can break the record of 803 wins if Westchester can takes the tournament title.
Next up is Capital Christian who defeated Beverly Hills 62-49 and had a win over Etiwanda yesterday.
Other westside scores…
Edison 68, LACES 51
Julian Ross scored 18 points, grabbed six rebounds and, for good measure, jammed in a monster dunk as St. Bernard defeated Culver City 69-64, Friday night and extended their winning streak to three games
“This win right here it did a lot for us,” Ross said. “This was a good team that we were facing and we came out with a lot of intensity. So we just kept it up, we kept the lead up and just pushed forward from there.”
St. Bernard head coach Mitch Runco was very pleased with his young team’s performance and gives credit to their home-court advantage.
“Our kids we just had a lot of energy,” Runco said. “And I thought we just had a little more energy than them. We played a little bit harder so I give credit to that. I think us being at home played a good role in that as well.”
It would not have mattered if the Vikings were the visiting team from the awful performance Culver City was putting on. The Centaurs had 10 turnovers in the first quarter which put them in a 43-32 hole at halftime.