East County Sports

Simanek, Simmons lead Jaguars in win


East County Sports staff report

CHULA VISTA (1-11-2019) – It was Goldilocks Night in the Pacific Coast Athletic Conference, with the top three schools in the South Division all coming out of Thursday’s (Jan. 11) action with varying degrees of victory: one won easily, one barely hung on, and one fell just right.

Which is which is for you to decide!

Southwestern 66, L.A. Harbor 61: At Chula Vista, the host Jaguars mounted a 17-point cushion with 3:23 remaining, yet struggled to hang on to finally clip the Seahawks of Wilmington.

A pair of former East County stars made a big impact for the Jaguars on Thursday evening, both posting a double-double.

A 12-6 run to open the fourth period gave Southwestern a 67-47 advantage, but a late 14-2 answer by Harbor nearly got out of hand before he final buzzer sounded.

Freshman point guard Kaleese Petties opened things up in the third period, pouting in 10 of her  17 points to push the lead into double figures, 52-51, as Southwestern shot 45 percent from the floor through three quarters.

And when Sierra Simanek (Santana) and Danielle Simmons (Helix) added 6 points each in the fourth, the Jags had worked hard enough before the Seahawks’ late yet merely cosmetic run against the reserves..

Simanek came off the bench to finish with a team-best 18 points, completing a double-double with 12 rebounds, as did Simmons with 10 points and 13 boards for Southwestern (7-7).

For Harbor (8-9), Katelyn Martin led all scorers with 25 points, but she also committed 7 turnovers. Martin made 11-of-25 shots from the floor, but her teammates combined to shoot an unforgiving 18.9 percent (10-for-53).

Imperial Valley 64, San Diego Mesa 53:  Prior to the creation of the Pacific Coast Athletic Conference, there was a time these two schools would never meet, only playing once in 1983 when “higher authorities” above the coaching staffs forced a ballgame between the schools.

Thirty-six years later, however, Mesa voluntarily traveled to Imperial for a non-conference contest, even though the schools meet next week, again at DePaoli Sports Complex, to open PCAC action.

In this conference preview, give the advantage to the Lady Arabs, who compiled a 10-point halftime lead and kept the margin there throughout in the second half to down the Olympians.

With the victory, Imperial Valley (7-9) matches Southwestern and San Diego City for most victories among South Division programs.

For Mesa (4-10), Samantha LeMay-Zambrano was the leading scorer with 20 points, closely followed by 19 points from Yusra Gharram, who registered a double-double with 11 rebounds.

San Diego City 76, Desert 57:  after registering season scoring highs in their last two outings, the Knights nearly made it three in a row in settling for an easy triumph over winless College of the Desert at Harry West Gym.

City center Elliott Nixon tallied 10 of her game-high 21 points in the second period, when the Knights rang up 25 points to take a 40-24 advantage at the break.

Meanwhile, two other Knights recorded double-doubles to help City dominate inside.

Mariah Wonders finished with 17 points and 18 rebounds, while Kiley Pope was solid with 14 points and 10 boards.

Also scoring in double figures for San Diego City (7-8) was Alissa Wolfblack with 10 points.

For the Roadrunners (0-13) of Palm Desert, Kiera Duran posted 19 points, while reserve Julie Rodriguez added 11.

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