East Union’s girls basketball team can always rely on 6-foot-2 junior center Donja Payne to provide some scoring punch inside, but other players are beginning to find their stroke from the perimeter.
The Lancers knocked down a season-high 10 3-pointers and got scoring contributions from nine different players in a 68-51 drubbing of visiting Sonora on Tuesday.
Payne finished with 13 points in limited action, but it was Julia Vezaldenos and her 18 points — much of it coming from four made 3s — who had the Wildcats (1-4) on their heels.
“When you start seeing the ball go through the net, whether it’s on a transition layup or an outside shot, the team just gains confidence,” East Union coach Jim Agostini said. “It raises the whole level of play. It’s a good sign for us. It’s allowing us to play the game more freely.”
Nina Murphy contributed 11 points and hit three 3s for the Lancers (3-4), who have the rest of the week off before starting the Tracy Breakfast Lions/Tom Hawkins Tournament against Tokay next Wednesday, Dec. 27.
Sonora was paced by Ainslee Shuemake and Haylie Santos, who poured in 14 points each. East Union set the tone early with defense, which led to transition buckets and an early 19-8 lead.
Sierra 69, Riverbank 45
Eleven different Timberwolves scored in one of the program’s highest-scoring games in recent years.
Natalie Dias spearheaded the barrage with 16 points, and freshman Jordan Hayter finished with 14. Sierra (4-4) was sparked early on by its defense led by Jasmin Correa, which helped it build a 34-16 halftime lead.
“The intensity our girls came out with tonight needs to be what we bring to every game,” Sierra coach Larissa Founts-Bergerson said. “I say it every night, but if we continue to work hard and climb we should be ready to get after it in league. We just have to keep fighting.”
Ripon 59, Grace Davis 56
MODESTO — The Indians (8-0) remain undefeated after “limiting” Davis star guard Lea Anderson to 36 points. She eclipsed the 50-point barrier in back-to-back games last week against Sierra and Central Catholic.
“She got her points but she averaged 50 last week,” Ripon coach Rick Inderbitzin said. “She had to earn every one of them.”
Rachel Sausedo, Kayla Jacklich and Sarah Thompson took turns guarding the Cal State Dominguez Hills recruit. Katie Kaiser and Reina Sausedo handled much of the scoring load, producing 17 and 16 points, respectively. Reina Sausedo also had 12 rebounds and six assists.
Sierra 46, Riverbank 30
Elise Peterson led a balanced scoring effort with 11 points. Madi Boyd contributed 10, while Manjot Chahal and Nicole Balay turned in nine and eight, respectively.