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Vezaldenos leads EU to first win
Her 10-point effort in 4th helps Lancers pull away
Victoria Vezaldenos (22) goes to the basket for two of her game-high 21 points Tuesday in East Unions win over Downey High. - photo by Photo By Sean Kahler

When the ball slid through the net after Victoria Vezaldenos’ 3-point play late in the fourth, what was in close game became a formality as the junior led East Union to its first win of the season with a 21-point effort in a 46-33 win over Downey High Tuesday.

Vezaldenos lit up her Dalben Center guests, scoring 10 of her game-high 21 in the final period to pull out a contest that looked to be either teams’ to have when they left the court with East Union leading 19-16 at the half.

Vezaldenos was definitely the difference, scoring early and often for the youth-laden Lancers and also making her presence felt on the defensive end. Vezaldenos scored in each period and made her most significant contributions late in the ball game with her second 3-point play in the final period.

“She is a player playing in her first varsity basketball game,” East Union head coach Jim Agostini said. “She plays that type of game that if you are a fan of basketball you enjoy watching because it’s just relentless energy.

“If she picks up a loose ball, she’s going.”

East Union (1-1) handled a challenge the Knights presented in tall post-presence Makala Peterson. Peterson is a sophomore making her varsity debut and will likely demand some attention from future opponents.

The Lancers gave Peterson all the attention she deserved with Madison Hoffman and Nayeli Del Real watching her throughout the contest. Getting a body on her in the post was no easy task, and her reach made rebounding difficult. Peterson would finish with 15 points, thanks largely in part to the Lancers’ effort from their post players.

“We had some good play from two of our younger girls,” Agostini said. “Del Real put a body on her and Madison Hoffman did some really nice things with her. We told them to not be afraid to just physically get in there. You have to engage and be strong, and we talked about that.

“I was definitely pleased with the job they did down low.”

Olivia Vezaldenos also made major contributions in the win, scoring in each quarter too and finishing with nine points.  She made her biggest bucket after the Knights had closed the lead to three and she answered with a 3-point play. The play sparked the Lancers and gave the younger of the Vezaldenos sisters her first taste of varsity success in her freshman season, with big sister close by.

“I just try to stay focused throughout the whole game,” Victoria Vezaldenos said. “And my aunt just passed away last month so I try and think of her. She told our family that all she wanted to do was see my sister (Olivia) and I play basketball together.

“She didn’t make it this far, but I try to keep her in my mind and go hard.”


East Union 55, Downey 33

The Lancers held a less than comfortable 22-19 lead at the half, but found their stride in the second half, cruising to a 22-point win over the Downey Knights Tuesday at the Dalben Center.

Anna Wood led the Lancers with 17 points, while Maddie Yslava chipped in with 15.