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McDaniel, Rose combine for 52 to lead Lancers into second round
East Union freshman forward Shalane Jackson gets her shot off over Inderkum defender Brea Blevins. - photo by JONAMAR JACINTO/The Bulletin
East Union High recorded its last field goal with 4 minutes, 29 seconds left.
And it didn’t matter.
The No. 4-seeded Lancers produced their highest single-game point total of the season in their 75-61 victory over No. 13 Inderkum of Sacramento to open the Sac-Joaquin Section Division III at Dalben Center Tuesday.
Ashley Rose kept Inderkum (16-11) at a double-digit distance by calmly draining all 10 of her free throws over the final 4 minutes, finishing with game-highs 27 points and eight assists.
“Every single practice we shoot at least 50 free throws,” Rose said. “It wasn’t so much clutch, it’s just repetition. I shoot it so much that it’s second nature.”
Not to be outdone, Cal Baptist-bound Rachel McDaniel scored 10 of her 25 points during the pivotal third quarter when the Lancers (26-2) went on an early 13-2 run to stretch their lead to 49-29 — the largest of the game.
McDaniel also had five steals and four assists. Many of Rose and McDaniel’s assists were to each other, though it wasn’t until the 1:30 mark in the second quarter that they hooked up. The dynamic duo went on top cap the 7-0 spurt that ended the half with Rose hitting McDaniel in stride for an easy fastbreak layup.
“It’s a lot of fun playing off of her,” McDaniel said. “There’s just a lot of chemistry between us two, but we also distribute to other people on the court. I love playing with her.”
Leading up to East Union’s late first-half surge both teams struggled to get in sync offensively.
East Union turned it over on each of its four possessions of the contest, while the Tigers gave it away 13 times in the opening quarter.
Inderkum ended up with 28 turnovers — some forced by East Union’s relentless pressure in full- or half-court situations, while others can be attributed to youthful mistakes. The Tri-County Conference champion starts two freshmen, two sophomores and one junior.
One of those freshmen, standout 5-foot-10-inch center Riana Boyd, led the team with 14 points, 12 rebounds and two blocks.
“Our inexperience just kind of caught up to us,” Inderkum coach Marty Tateishi said. “We turned the ball over a lot. Not having any seniors hurt, and the pressure got to us.”
East Union hosts No. 5 El Dorado, which thumped Ceres 69-33, Thursday in the second round. The Lancers have qualified for the section playoffs in each of Jim Agostini’s nine years (the first seven were spent as an assistant coach), but they will be playing just their second quarterfinal game Thursday.
“We’re on house money right now,” Agostini said. “We’re just going to try and go out and beat El Dorado. It’s just a good time for East Union girls basketball.”