East County Sports

Matadoras knock off Scotties in opener



By Dave Dickens



SPRING VALLEY (1-18-2022) — The host Mount Miguel Matadors were coming off an unusual loss, royally lost to the Rosary Academy Royals out of Fullerton, who were only 6-5 at the time as the Lady Matadors (10-4) had a horrible loss that had a 10-game lay off until they were to play their first game out would be against Grossmont Hills League opponent, the Helix Lady Highlanders (6-5, 1-1 GHL).


In the GHL. Helix had come off of back to back, Friday, and Saturday games. Friday night was a crazy, playoff-type atmosphere, as both the Monte Vista Lady Monarchs and Scotties played close but the Lady Highlanders ended up victorious as Monte Vista still played a tough game. 


The Lady Highlanders played another contest less than 24 hours later, facing the Fallbrook Lady Warriors, who were 8-6 at the time, defeated the Lady Highlanders, who were 6-4 at the time, 59-43.


Typically the Lady Matadors come out of the gate slowly and try to avoid mistakes.


Usually, they try to find out the weakness of the opponent, and how to exploit it.


Possibly because this game was a key league game, the Lady Matadors decided a different approach, to play great defense, turn up the speed dial, and claim the game early. The host Lady Matadors, after only one quarter of play, were up 21-4. 


The home squad increased their offensive production, while still having stellar defense played by the defensive guru herself, KK Luffborough with 7 rebounds, and two steals. The Lady Matadors won the second quarter, as well, quite easily, leaving the score 44-15 at the half.


“We played really well in the first half but the second half kind of just put it in cruise control,” said Mount Miguel head coach Robbie Sandoval.


As mentioned before, the Lady Matadors typically play at a much slower pace, also put up less points instead of scoring a majority of their points in bunches and at a much faster pace. Mount Miguel took care of the third quarter, 61-31, over Helix, finally finishing the contest, 73-40, on behalf of the Lady Matadors.


Danay Williams-Pope lit up the scoreboard with 27 points, and on the defensive side, 11 rebounds, three steals, and two blocks.


Another impressive offensive player for the host Matadors, Zanna Hurst, had some great open looks, leading to 19 total points, three three-pointers, four rebounds, four assists, and two steals.


Last, but most definitely not least, Nataly Bravo put up 15 points, three three-pointers, two rebounds, and three assists.


“We definitely came out ready to play and fired up, Danay had a great game and was absolutely dominating in the paint, as for me I was just doing whatever I needed to do in order to win,” said Hurst.


“I would say that we played great defense and played well the entire game. All of us did our job. We never stopped pressing, and even though it was tiring, it gave us the lead. I am happy with how we played tonight, we moved the ball and played together as a team,” said Bravo.


“When we came out in the first half, we had a great amount of energy, we were engaged because of the crowd. Zanna also was playing very physical and had a lot of open looks for her shots. This was probably the best game for us, ss everyone on the team was playing with the least amount of mistakes, and we played as if we needed to get prepped for a playoff game,” said Williams-Pope.


 The Lady Matadors (11-5, 1-0 GHL) will face one of what could be the games of the year at the Grossmont Lady Foothillers (10-1, 1-0 GHL). This one even has an early effect on who will take over first place at the top of the Grossmont Hills League.


This will be the early game of the year out at the Grossmont High gymnasium for this battle on Friday, Jan. 21 at 5:30 p.m.


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