By: Don Hazard
On Jan. 8 Kern Valley traveled to Boron High School to start the second round of league play.
The first time Kern Valley played Boron at home Kern Valley won the game by eight points after being tied at the beginning of the fourth quarter.
In that game we had Kaila Gholson pressing Boron’s best player the length of the court for the first half and Kasey Lassen pressing her in the second half.
Hazard said, “In this game at Boron we didn’t have Kasey (Lassen) who is out with a twisted ankle so we didn’t press the entire game until the last two minutes.”
Boron had a five-point lead at half time. Kern Valley did not press and was playing a 1-2-2 on defense. In the second half Riley Embree started to pressure Boron’s best player full court. Basically a box-and-one defense. Boron was still leading the game by five points with two minutes left in the game.
Kern Valley called a time out and we went to a full court press. The Lady Broncs were able to cause several turnovers. With about a minute left Danna Avila hit a three-pointer that pulled us within two. With about 20 seconds left Kayla Benavides hit another three-pointer from the wing to give us the lead.
The Lady Broncs were able to hold them scoreless in that time period. Boron had a chance to tie the game with two free throws with seven seconds left, but missed them both and Kern Valley won the game.
Gholson grabbed the rebound on the second missed free throw and smartly dribbled around the back court awhile until time expired.
Embree had five points, five rebounds, one assist and three steals. Head coach Don Hazard said, “She did a great job pressing Boron’s best player the second half.”
Avila hit two three-pointers for six points and had two rebounds and two steals. Hazard said, “Her three-pointer with about a minute left in the game was huge.”
Gholson played a great game and had a double-double with 12 points and 12 rebounds. She also had two assists, three steals and one block. Benavides had five points, one rebound and six steals.
Hazard said, “And she hit a huge three-pointer with 15 seconds left in the game to give us the lead.”
Clarissa Roca had two rebounds and made a great defensive play at the end of the game to seal the win. Eva Brennan had five points and six rebounds, and played great defense.
Hazard finished up by saying, “The team is playing hard and enjoying the season. I was really happy with their attitude and effort in the game. They never gave up. We hope Kasey Lassen’s ankle will be better in time for our games against Rosamond and Cal City next week. She is a great player.”
Kern Valley took on Rosamond Tuesday and will play at home against Cal City on Friday.