Jan. 15 seems so long ago for Sierra’s girls basketball team.
That was when the Timberwolves traveled to Tracy and upset Kimball, 39-38. Combine that with their win over East Union just two days prior, and they appeared to have the makings of a possible Valley Oak League championship run.
Sierra hasn’t won since, while Kimball has looked unbeatable.
Coming off a resounding win at Weston Ranch, the VOL co-leading Jaguars avenged their loss to Sierra on Thursday, 49-35. They have been downright impressive, even with standout senior Nona Kuumba no longer on the team.
“It’s team chemistry,” Kimball coach Mike Granillo said. “They’re all realizing that they can depend on each other, so that’s the big key. When they focus on that they’re pretty unstoppable.”
Sierra (2-6 VOL, 10-11 overall) could not stop athletic 5-foot-10 freshman Donwanae Anthony, who led Kimball (7-1, 18-3) with 18 points, 11 rebounds and four steals. Sarah Nunes contributed 10 points.
The Jaguars bothered Sierra all game with their length and speed, causing 23 turnovers while committing only eight overall and three through three quarters.
“I think that Kimball and Weston Ranch are definitely the most athletic (teams in the VOL),” Sierra coach Martha Spivey said. “They have a different style of play and different caliber of play than everybody else.”
Celine Barber fired 10 points to pace Sierra. Kristen Maestretti blocked four shots to go with seven points. Kayla Wilson scored all seven of her points in the first half, the last three coming on made free throws after she was fouled on a trey attempt. That inched the Timberwolves in 25-19 with 1:30 left in the second quarter, but they would get no closer.
Kimball, which led 29-20 at halftime, widened the gap with a backbreaking 8-0 run that ended the third. The 41-25 cushion to start the fourth could have been larger, but the Jaguars failed to convert on all seven of their free throws in the third period.
The two teams have headed in different directions since their previous meeting. While Kimball has won five straight, the Timberwolves are now on a five-game losing streak and have fallen three games back of third-place Sonora.
“We play to the level of our competition in a lot of ways,” Spivey said. “We’re trying to find consistency right now.
Kimball 38, Sierra 31
The Timberwolves dropped to 4-4 in the VOL (14-8 overall) with their top scorer, Trayana Davis, out sick.
Devi Coglio tried to pick up the slack, finishing with 10 points. Brianna Padua added seven.