Oakmont plays hard to the end in loss to Christian Brothers
SACRAMENTO — First-year Oakmont High School girls basketball coach Zachary Lovell knew this was a transition season for his team.
Despite finishing the non-league portion of the schedule with an impressive 14-2 record, the Vikings have fallen to 2-4 in the Capital Valley Conference, including an 85-43 loss to Christian Brothers on Tuesday night at Ron Limeberger Gymnasium in Sacramento.
“We thought early on we would struggle a little more than we did,” Lovell said. “It is some of the first-year growth catching up to us. League is always going to be tougher.
“We need to make sure we are stepping up our game, and we are still in a learning process. As the curve (gets) steeper and increases on us, we just haven’t followed suit. But we will.”
Tuesday’s game got out of control quickly as the Falcons (16-7 overall, 6-0 CVC) stormed to a 25-1 lead in the first 5½ minutes. Christian Brothers is the top-seeded Division III team in the Sac-Joaquin Section power ratings. Oakmont is No. 13.
With all nine players from last season’s team playing this season, Lovell found solace in that the Vikings stayed composed and continued to play hard.
“The bright spot for this game is I think we got tougher,” he said. “We didn’t play tough in the first quarter.”
And despite a 52-20 deficit at halftime, Oakmont played the Falcons to a 12-12 draw in the third quarter.
“It’s something we talked about at halftime,” Lovell said. “It’s just learning. Against a team that is going to be physical against you, it’s about learning how to play back without stepping over boundaries.”
Case in point: Trailing by 40 with less than two minutes left, senior Kelsey Caudill dived out of bounds to grab a loose ball. Caudill scored eight points, and fellow senior Brittney Martin led Oakmont with 11.
Christian Brothers sophomore Kira McKechnie had game highs with 21 points and 14 rebounds.
The Vikings play their final four regular-season games at home, starting Thursday night against Bella Vista.
“Now is the time for us to make our run and stay at home for a little bit with a little friendlier confine for our shooters to make a run and head into the playoffs,” Lovell said.
Sierra Foothill League
Granite Bay 59, Roseville 52 — The Grizzlies (11-12, 2-4 SFL) took a 13-point lead into the fourth quarter and held on to beat the Tigers (3-19, 0-6) at Moeller Gym.
Freshman Daeja Black and senior Katrina Reeves each had 16 points and two steals for Granite Bay. Reeves had eight rebounds and six assists, and Black grabbed five rebounds. Junior Jennifer Manduca had 11 points, eight rebounds and four steals for the Grizzlies, and sophomore Annie Wright had eight points and 13 rebounds.
Roseville junior Lindsay Anderson scored a game-high 24 points, grabbed 12 rebounds and had three steals. Senior Marrisa Dumford had 11 points, 11 rebounds, two assists and two steals, and junior Summer Muir had 11 points, six rebounds and four steals. Junior Baylee Spencer had six points and three blocked shots.
Nevada Union 52, Woodcreek 41 — Junior Ashley Breshears led the visiting Timberwolves (11-12, 3-3) with 13 points in their loss to the Miners (17-4, 5-1), who took over sole possession of first place with Del Oro’s 43-38 loss to Rocklin.