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Canyon’s measuring stick

Cowboys rally from eight down in the fourth quarter but comes up short

Posted: December 18, 2008 10:42 p.m.
Updated: December 19, 2008 4:55 a.m.

Canyon High's Alexa Davison (15) drives against the Bishop defense of Alissa Campanero (4) and Inga Orekhova (13) in the third quarter Thursday.

 

Canyon girls head basketball coach Stan Delus was telling everyone he could about The Bishop's School of San Diego before Thursday's game.

After his Cowboys lost 55-45 at Canyon High's Brickhouse Thursday, some of the first words out of his mouth were, "I told you so."

Whether or not he thinks his team could compete for a CIF title, he knew that scheduling the CIF-San Diego Section finalist from last season would be the measuring stick.

The answer might be, judging based off the Cowboys' performance Thursday, that Canyon is a legitimate contender and a threat to win this season's Foothill League title.

Canyon fought back from an eight-point deficit in the fourth quarter to tie the game 43-43 with four minutes to play.

Northwestern-bound guard Inga Orekhova was killing Canyon from the perimeter prior to that point.

The 6-foot-3-inch sharpshooter made three 3-pointers in the first half, pacing the Knights to a 28-23 halftime lead and a 41-33 advantage after three quarters.

But Canyon's defensive intensity rose and the tide began to turn.

Canyon guard Brooke Lemar hit two jumpers from distance to start the comeback, then hit a 3-pointer to tie the game.

The reason for the comeback?

"Full-court pressure, defense and the transition game," Lemar said.

But Bishop's answer was Orekhova.

After Lemar's three, the ball swung to the Knights' big guard at the top of the key. She then drained the 3-pointer, her sixth of the game, putting the stop sign to the Cowboys' chances.

"I was looking at the clock and I just wanted to win. That's it," Orekhova said.

It was the first three points of a 9-0 Bishop's run.

"She took that pin and popped that balloon," Delus said of the guard. "She saw that balloon swelling and said, ‘I've got to pop it.'"

Orekhova scored 27 points.

Teammate Gizelle Studevent, who took a no-look pass from Orekhova for a layup and then followed with a pump-fake layup to continue the run, added 19.

Lemar led all Canyon scorers with 14 points.

Brieanna Perkins added 12, mostly on athletic drives to the lane.

Delus said after the game that he felt his team bought into his intensity for the game. They responded by making it a playoff atmosphere.

Afterward, the team had a long talk in the locker room.

"Very disappointed," Lemar said of the game's result. "We'll get it back."

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