Big second half lifrts Knights over Serra

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After Southern California Regional Division IV playoff wins over Porterville Granite Hills and Mar Vista Windward, Serra High’s boys’ basketball team was pitted against Del Rey League rival Bishop Montgomery in the semifinals on March 18 in Torrance.

In an evenly matched first half, the Cavaliers held a 32-31 halftime lead.

In the second half, though, things went cold for Serra and hot for the Knights as they outscored the Cavaliers, 43-21, for a 74-53 victory.

After Southern California Regional Division IV playoff wins over Porterville Granite Hills and Mar Vista Windward, Serra High’s boys’ basketball team was pitted against Del Rey League rival Bishop Montgomery in the semifinals on March 18 in Torrance.

In an evenly matched first half, the Cavaliers held a 32-31 halftime lead.

In the second half, though, things went cold for Serra and hot for the Knights as they outscored the Cavaliers, 43-21, for a 74-53 victory.

Serra saw its season end at 24-10, while Bishop Montgomery went on to increase its record to 27-6 by winning its Southern California Regional championship game over Cantwell-Sacred Heart from Montebello, 66-56, last Saturday at Colony High in Ontario. The Knights advanced to the California State Division IV final against Northern California champion Moraeu Catholic, which will be on Saturday at Sleep Train Arena in Sacramento.

It was an effective defense by Bishop Montgomery that dominated the second half. The Knights held Serra to just five third quarter points to take a 50-37 lead, then continued to pull away from the Cavaliers in the final period.

“We came out flat,” Serra head coach Dwan Hurt said. “Bishop Montgomery came out and did everything they had to do. They played hard and were the better team.”

Doing the most damage to the Cavaliers for the Knights was Long Beach State University-bound senior guard Justin Bibbins with a game-high 26 points. Jordan Schakel added 12 points and Stephen Thompson, Jr. chipped in 11.

Serra was led by Jason Richardson with 16 points.  Ronald Freeman and Tavrion Dawson each contributed 10 points.

Last Saturday, the Knights made their first state final since 2009 by topping the Cardinals.

After a 33-33 tie in the third quarter, Bishop Montgomery went on a 15-4 run for a 48-37 lead and continued with a solid advantage throughout the rest of the game.

Bibbins sparked the Knights with 26 points, 17 of those in the second half. Thompson had 14 points.

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Butler lands on All-Southern Section Open

By Joe Snyder

GVN Correspondent

Serra High standout girls’ basketball player Chyanne Butler made the all-CIF Southern Section Open Division team, which was released on Monday.

Butler, a transfer from Playa del Rey St. Bernard, averaged 17.4 points, 4.7 rebounds, 3.8 assists and 3.3 steals a game in keying the Lady Cavaliers to the co-Del Rey League championship with rival Torrance Bishop Montgomery, the quarterfinals of the Southern Section Open Division playoffs, and the Southern California Regional Division IV final.

Butler, though, was injured early in the regional final that could have been costly for Serra in its 59-52 loss to Chatsworth Sierra Canyon last Saturday at Colony High in Ontario. Butler had already been injured in the semifinal contest at Serra against Junipero Serra of San Juan Capistrano. The Lady Cavaliers won that game, 55-40.

In the Southern Section Division IIA, champion West Torrance had Player of the Year in junior Kayla Sato and Coach of the Year in Mike Caporaso.

The Lady Warriors had two other players make all-CIF in junior Kyle Fujioka and sophomore Haley Tanabe.

Also making the IIA team from semifinalist North Torrance, which fell to West, was sophomore Tiara Scott.

In Division IVAA, champion Bishop Montgomery had Player of the Year in senior Janelle Odiona and Coach of the Year in first year mentor Bridgette Reyes.

Two other Knights made the team in juniors Chelsey Lidy and Christine Delapina.

For the boys, Bishop Montgomery’s Justin Bibbins made the Open Division team.

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Butler, Serra go down in SoCal regional final

 

By Joe Snyder

GVN Correspondent

Serra High girls’ basketball standout Chyanne Butler injured her ankle in the Lady Cavaliers’ 55-40 Southern California Regional semifinal victory over San Juan Capistrano Junipero Serra on March 18, but got the go-ahead to play in last Saturday’s final against Chatsworth Sierra Canyon last Saturday at Colony High in Ontario.

Just 2:44 into the game, Butler was fouled hard by a Trailblazer player as she, again, went down. Butler, whose foot was in a cast since the March 18 injury, she would not return.

Her replacement, Brooke Bayman, converted on both free throws.

Playing without Butler, the Lady Cavaliers did everything to stay in the game. After trailing by five points (17-12) after the first quarter and 27-26 at halftime, Serra was able to be even with Sierra Canyon with a 38-38 tie through three periods that even included a brief 34-32 lead on two free throws by Caila Hailey with 5:14 left in the quarter.

Butler’s injury finally took its toll in the fourth quarter that saw the Trailblazers finish off the Cavaliers by outscoring them, 21-14, with a 59-52 win to advance to Saturday’s final at the Sleep Train Arena in Sacramento.

Out of Sierra Canyon’s 21 points, 14 of those were from free throws. Among those were 10 from Cheyanne Wallace, who finished with 12 points.

“We didn’t play well,” Serra head coach McKenzie Hadley said. “Sierra Canyon made 14 free throws in a row. Losing Butler did hurt but it wasn’t the reason (for the loss). We didn’t execute and that hurt.”

Butler wasn’t alone on the injury list. The Cavaliers also lost Chyann Richard who also went down to a concussion midway in the third quarter.

Leading Serra was Cydney Bolton with 11 points and three assists. Kayla Bibb added 10 points and Hailey contributed nine points and six rebounds.

Six-foot-two center-forward Kennedy Burke sparked the Trailblazers with 15 points and 15 rebounds, while Alexis Griggsby had 15 points and five rebounds.

In the semifinals against J. Serra, Hailey led the Cavaliers with 16 points and 15 rebounds, followed by Bolton with 12 points. Richards hauled down 11 rebounds.

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Cavs baseball rolls over LACES; falls to powerhouse Los Alamitos

By Joe Snyder

GVN Correspondent

Serra High’s baseball team split its two non-league games last week.

After rolling over Los Angeles Center of Enriched Studies (LACES), 10-3, last Thursday, the Cavaliers (3-2) traveled to powerhouse Los Alamitos last Saturday and fell on the short end of a 5-3 score.

Against the Griffins, Serra was tied at one through four innings, but Los Alamitos scored three runs in the bottom of the fifth to take the lead for good.

The Cavaliers scored twice in the top of the sixth to cut the Griffins’ lead to 4-3, before Los Alamitos had an insurance run in the bottom of the sixth.

Three errors also plagued Serra with just one of the five Los Alamitos runs being earned.

Losing pitcher Cardinal Fernandezzees allowed just one earned run on five hits. He struck out five batters.

On offense, returning all-American Marcus Wilson went 3-for-3 with two runs batted in and two runs scored. He had a double.

Mateo Brambila was 2-for-3.

The Cavaliers had little trouble against LACES in taking an 8-0 lead through four innings.

Freshmen Kennedy Guillin and Adrian Morales each had two hits and two RBI’s. Guillin also scored once. Senior Shane Early went 2-for-3 with one RBI and one run. Brambila had a two-run single.

Serra visited Gahr High in Cerritos in a Redondo Tournament game last Tuesday and will face a big challenge as it travels to Mater Dei in Santa Ana for a Boras Classic contest on Saturday at 6 p.m.

At Gardena on March 19, the Panthers picked up their first victory of the season at 3-2 in non-league action.

Gardena (1-3) scored the winning run in the bottom of the seventh inning.

The Panthers start Marine League action at home against Banning next Wednesday at 3 p.m.

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