No. 1 Sac High beats No. 5 McClatchy in girls basketball

Published: Thursday, Jan. 24, 2013 - 12:00 am | Page 7C
Last Modified: Tuesday, Feb. 26, 2013 - 8:06 pm

Sacramento High is one of the area's most feared and respected girls basketball programs. The Dragons are ranked No. 1 by The Bee and No. 10 in Northern California by NorCalPreps.com.

But before Wednesday night's Metro Conference game against No. 5 McClatchy, Sac coach Michele Massari still was looking for a little more grit from her Dragons.

She got what she was looking for as Sacramento put on a show of dominance in beating the young Lions 52-36 in Oak Park.

Other than the opening minutes, the Dragons (16-4, 7-0) never trailed and led 26-15 at halftime.

After the Lions closed to within 41-32 on a three-pointer by Alex Washington, the Dragons ran off 11 consecutive points. The run, which included three-pointers by freshmen Alana Myers and Aliceah Hernandez and senior Allie Green, made sure there would be no comeback or threat to a league winning streak that is now 84 games.

"Our challenge, which I stressed to them at halftime, was that we've got to take it personal when people make runs on us," Massari said. "We have to push back and put them away. I thought we did a good job of that in the third quarter."

Junior Chaya Durr, who finished with a game-high 16 points, set the tone opening the second half.

The rangy, 5-foot-10, quick-handed guard scored the half's first eight points for a 34-15 advantage, including back-to-back steals that she converted into layups. Durr was 7 for 13 from the field, mostly on slashing drives.

"Chaya is going to be a phenomenal player, a major-level kid," Massari said.

Sacramento's freshman trio of Hernandez (nine points), Myers (eight points) and point guard Andrea Butler played key roles, too, but McClatchy's youth also was evident.

The Lions (17-2, 5-2) have had six underclassmen playing key roles. Under second-year coach Jessica Kunisaki, the Lions are enjoying their best season since 2009-10, when they went 24-7 and lost to Kennedy in the Sac-Joaquin Section Division I semifinals and to Berkeley in the CIF NorCal quarterfinals.

That team was coached by Lions legend Harvey Tahara, now a member of the section's Hall of Fame.

Kunisaki was a Bee All-Metro player for Tahara before going to compete at Chapman University in Southern California.

"Jessica is doing a fabulous job," athletic director Rob Feickert said. "I know they would have liked to play better tonight, but they'll bounce back."

Washington, a sophomore, led the Lions with 10 points, sophomore Lauren Nubla added nine points, and McClatchy's twin towers of 6-2 freshman Gigi Garcia and 6-2 sophomore Destiney Lee scored five each.

© Copyright The Sacramento Bee. All rights reserved.

Read more articles by Bill Paterson



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