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Golden Valley basketball's season ends at home

Posted: February 26, 2014 10:55 p.m.
Updated: February 26, 2014 10:55 p.m.

Golden Valley's Destiny Monroe, left, protects the ball against North Torrance on Wednesday at Golden Valley High.

 

Coming off its first ever postseason victory, the Golden Valley Grizzlies girls basketball held a lead at halftime against the North High Saxons of Torrance.

But North turned it up a notch in the second half to spoil Golden Valley’s first-ever home playoff game.

Behind Kylie Oshiro’s 20 points — all in the second half — the Saxons pulled away in the third quarter to defeat the Grizzlies 78-62 in the second round of the CIF-Southern Section Division IIA playoffs Wednesday at Golden Valley.

“We came out in the second half flat, and they started hitting their shots,” said Golden Valley head coach Kerri Garland. “And that press was tenacious and it wore us down.”

The Grizzlies (15-12) led 27-24 at halftime, but the Saxons (21-7) cranked up the pressure in the third quarter.

North’s full-court press forced the Grizzlies into 14 turnovers in the period, which led to a 54-41 Saxon lead heading into the fourth quarter.

“We got to get into our press,” said North head coach Lauren Kamiyama on the message to her team at halftime. “We need to cause turnovers, and our turnovers usually lead to easy baskets for us.”

Oshiro scored 10 points in each of the final two quarters.

Tiara Scott added 17 for the Saxons.

Katelyn Serizawa dropped in all 12 of her points in the second half, while Brittany McPherson finished with 10 points for North.

Senior Mariah Madison led the Grizzlies with 16 points.

“I just played like it was my last (game),” Madison said. “I wanted to win it for my team.”

Destiny Monroe dropped in 15 points for Golden Valley, while Caitlyn Zindroski scored 11 points.

North outscored the Grizzlies 54-35 in the second half.

“You want it so bad, but you see the time running out and the score going up and up,” Madison said. “There’s only so much you can do.”

But Garland emphasized how proud she was of her team, as the program continues to rise.

The Grizzlies tied the program record for Foothill League wins in a season with three, but suffered three losses by two points or less (two to Hart and one to Valencia).

And Saturday marked the program’s first-ever playoff win as it defeated Rancho Alamitos 57-37.

“We’re climbing that hill and we’re getting better,” Garland said. “I’m very proud of them because when I got here we were starting over, and they’ve made huge gains in such a short amount of time. I just wish I had them sooner.”

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