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Vars girls’ basketball team commands the floor in 59–16 win over Leadership Griffins

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By Yolanda Feng

Sophomore guard Lauren Chan dribbles against the defense. Photo by Christina Johnson

Through remarkable defense, the varsity girls’ basketball team crushed the Leadership Griffins 59–16 during their fifth league game on Jan. 26. The Cardinals are currently in second place with a league record of 4–2 in Division 1 of the San Francisco Section.

Sophomore guard Katelyn Lee started off the game strong with a three-pointer. The Lady Cards were dominant from the start, scoring twelve points within three minutes into the game. Junior forward Olivia Pan drained a two-point shot and sophomore guard Lauren Chan made a jump shot. The Cards’ streak continued, leading 19–0 until the last minute of the quarter. Junior guard Samantha Kwock scored two points with thirty seconds left in the quarter. The first quarter ended with the Cards overpowering the Griffins 23–3.

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The team continued to carry their game plan of trapping the ball and transitioning. Upon entering the second quarter, the players made smooth and swift passes, allowing senior forward Rufina Lui to score a layup as she was fouled by an opponent. The Cardinals maintained successful plays throughout the quarter. “We got a lot more rebounds,” senior co-captains Erin Li and Madison Toy said. “We transitioned really well, to a point where our coach wanted us to [calm down a little].” Sophomore guard Crystal Luu drained both free throws in the last thirty seconds, and the Lady Cards ended the first half dominating 36–8.

“We transitioned really well, to a point where our coach wanted us to calm down a little .”

Lee opened the second half with a layup. Junior forward Nomin Rinchin followed up with a steal and made a shot. The Lady Cardinals controlled the floor with their quick rebounds and steals. Sophomore guard Alisa Petalver secured a three-pointer and made five more points later on. At the end of the quarter, the Cardinals were holding a strong 42-point lead, ahead by 52–10.

Senior forward Madeline Quach dribbles the ball past a Griffin. Photo by Christina Johnson

In the last quarter, the Cardinals slowed their performance as they encountered some mistakes and slips, losing control of the ball. They were also unable to make many baskets throughout the quarter. Within the last twenty seconds, senior guard Kirsten Kuang secured a three-pointer. Despite only picking up seven points in the last quarter, the Cardinals closed the game conquering the Griffins 59–16.

The Griffins were no match for the Cardinals’ strong defense. However, the Cardinals admittedly had an overwhelming advantage with about fifteen players, while only six players showed up for the Griffins, according to Li and Toy.

Junior forward Nomin Rinchin shoots a layup in the third quarter. Photo by Christina Johnson

Since the loss against the Washington Eagles at the Battle of the Birds game, the Cards returned with wins against the Mission Bears 67–34, the Galileo Lions 72–36, and this game against the Griffins 59–16. They have been preparing for their games by inputting new techniques and plays. “I think we could work on boxing out a little better.” Li said. The team needs to stay more focused and is looking to improve and learn their new plays, according to Li and Toy.

The Lady Cards were unable to conquer the Lincoln Mustangs in their game yesterday, losing 64–31. Their next match will be against the Mission Bears on Feb. 7 at 5:30 p.m. at Mission High School.

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Vars girls’ basketball team commands the floor in 59–16 win over Leadership Griffins