The future of girls Valley Oak League basketball was on display Tuesday night at Sierra High School with two sophomores accounting for 68 points in a thrilling 61-56 win for visiting East Union over the Timberwolves.
Lancers sophomore Olivia Vezaldenos lit up the nets for 40 points, but none were as important as her last two.
Back-to-back 3-pointers from freshman Alison Edwards and sophomore Kayla Wilson brought Sierra (3-8 VOL, 11-13 overall) to within 59-56 with 8.5 seconds left after a 7-1 Timberwolves run. Vezaldenos was fouled on the ensuing inbounds play and sank her two free throws – two of her 12-of-13 performance from the line.
“I couldn’t have scored all those points if my teammates had not gotten me the ball,” said Vezaldenos, who had four first-quarter assists and finished with five along with four steals. “They got hot for a bit and they got close but I think we wanted to win it more. It is great to beat your rival on their home court and it was an overall great team effort.”
With Vezaldenos driving and shooting – she had two 3-pointers with the rest coming from field goals and free throws – Wilson had 15 of her 28 points from behind the arc, scoring two 3-pointers in an 11-point first period and two more down the stretch in the fourth quarter.
“Kayla Wilson had a great game,” Timberwolves coach Martha Spivey said. “She had a great practice Monday and came out focused and ready to go. When she is on she is on and the whole team just kind of jumps on her back and she carries us all through.
“We have a lot of fight in us and I don’t think we have really given up all season.”
After a horrible start in league, East Union (6-5, 15-8) started the night a game behind Sonora for the third and final playoff slot from the VOL. The Lancers now find themselves even with Sonora after the Wildcats were upset at Lathrop on Tuesday.
Part of East Union’s poor start to league was a 55-50 loss to Sierra, which snapped a 14-game skid to its rival with the win.
“We had an 0-3 start in league and then we were 1-4,” Lancers coach Jim Agostini said. “It was a long ways to get us to 6-5. We have won seven out of our last nine.
“You just can’t get VOL wins just like that. You have to show patience and be willing to get after it and the girls have done that.”
Freshman Loretta Kakala had eight points for East Union in the first quarter and finished with 10, but missed a good portion of the game with foul trouble.
Wilson had seven rebounds and teammate Haley Silva (seven points) had five rebounds.
Sierra 54, East Union 41
The Timberwolves outscored the Lancers in every quarter.
Sierra’s Devi Coglio led all scorers with 23 points and teammate Trayana Davis added 11 points with five rebounds. Cecilia Salcedo had 10 rebounds for the Timberwolves.
Jordyn Posz led a balanced East Union attack with eight points.