East County Sports

Curtis scores 40 in win; Hillers win late


EastCountySports.com staff report

NATIONAL CITY – El Capitan sophomore MACKENZIE CURTIS scored 40 points as the Vaqueros defeated the Vista Panthers 64-53, at the Sweetwater New Year’s Classic on Friday.

Curtis had 22 points in the first half and also went 8-for-9 from the line for the contest.

It wasn’t necessarily a one-woman show in the early going.

Freshman TIFFANY BICKFORD had a three-pointer in the first quarter.

Junior JORDAN GRANDY and sophomore JACEY DANKS also had a pair of first-period field goals as El Capitan countered the Panthers’ hot-start from three-point land.

Vista made three three-pointers as the teams combined for 40 first-quarter points, but El Cap led 25-15.

The Panthers weren’t done competing, outscoring the Vaqueros, 21-12 in the second, including another three triples, to trail by just one point, 37-36, at intermission.

It was the third quarter that El Capitan decided the game. And it was on the defensive end, as Vista put up just five points and trailed by six entering the fourth.

Although, Curtis kept up her scoring prowess, sophomore EMMA DRISKILL had five points in the fourth, including 3-of-4 from the foul stripe.

“Everyone stepped up tonight,” El Capitan head coach DARIN CURTIS said. “Jacey made her presence know early. Emma stepped up in the fourth quarter and Kylie did her job when we needed it.

“Shy (sophomore SHIANA PEREZ) played lock-down defense on their best player and STEPHANIE (YEAKLE) gave her a rest and still kept up the intensity.

“Tiffany and Jordan have been doing a great job scoring and assists, then took over the game in the end. 

“Mackenzie did her job tonight, finishing when we needed it. The scorebook looks lopsided, but everyone did their job and our improved defense in the second half was the difference.”

El Capitan improved to 12-5.

GROSSMONT 57, OLYMPIAN 55 – The Foothillers made it through another tough contest, outlasting the host Eagles to improve to 5-0 on the road.

Senior guard MARISSA GILES made a key bucket late to seal the win.

Senior guard ATHENA SOTELO had 20 points, six rebs, and four assists despite sitting out the fourth quarter due to muscle cramps, according to Grossmont head coach GRACE CAMPBELL.

Junior SARAH HENRY added 12 points and grabbed 10 boards.

Giles added 9 points, pulled down 4 rebounds, and made three steals despite still suffering from the flu.

Grossmont improved to 12-3 overall.

HOLTVILLE 62, MONTE VISTA 43 – The Monarchs couldn’t overcome a slow start against the Vikings in a Sweetwater New Year’s Classic.

Holtville led 17-8 after one quarter and 33-16 at halftime.

Senior TORRI HONORE scored 12 of her team-high 15 points in the second half for the Monarchs.

Senior SARA TAHA had 12 points, 10 of which came in the first half.

“Tonight was not a shooting night for us,” Monte Vista head coach SABRINA JIMENEZ said. “We weren’t hitting from the outside at all. We couldn’t finish around the rim, seemed like everything was just bouncing out. We also struggled rebounding.

“Holtville had way too many second and third chances offensively.

“(In) the fourth quarter, the girls finally turned it up a notch and forced Holtville to turn the ball over. It was a team effort defensively.”

Freshman MEADOW DELINO added 10 points for Monte Vista, including a three-pointer in the fourth quarter

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