Unlike last week’s Regional Final against Santa Ana Mater Dei, Saturday’s CIF State Division II championship game against Elk Grove won’t be an issue of size disadvantage.
“They have a decent point guard and a couple of wings who are pretty good,” Cajon coach Mark Lehman said. “They only start one girl who is 6-foot (junior Sydnee Kilbride) and she’s not a big scorer (3.1 points per game).”
Early in the week, Lehman wasn’t sure what kind of defense he was going to run, but seemed to like the zone that was successful against Mater Dei.
“I don’t know what we’ll do. They only have one outside shooter and chasing around takes energy,” he said.
The zone against Mater Dei was very successful, not only in slowing down the Monarchs, but also keeping the Cowgirls out of foul trouble, which can be Cajon’s Achilles’ Heel. Cajon committed just five total fouls in the 51-30 win against Mater Dei:
Elk Grove’s top players:
Mira Coleman, 5-8, Jr., G, 18.4 ppg, 5.5 rpg, 4.1 apg
Madison Wong, 5-6, Sr., G, 14.9 ppg, 3.6 rpg, 3.2 apg
Paiton Demps, 5-7, Jr., F, 12.3 ppg, 7.8 rpg, 1.9 apg
Cajon’s top players, stats through 1st CIF-SS playoff game
Kayla Washington, 6-0, Sr., F, 22.7 ppg, 13.6 rpg, 3.0 apg
Tyla Turner, 5-5, Sr., G, 13.7 ppg, 6.0 rpg, 7.3 apg
Tyra Turner, 5-5, Sr., G, 11.9 ppg, 4.5 rpg, 8.3 apg
Cajon isn’t limited to those players as fellow seniors Dezarae Embry (4.0 ppg, 4.0 rpg) and Taylor Goldsberry (9.7 ppg, 9.0 rpg). Junior Deja McBath a 5-10 forward came off the bench had some big baskets down the stretch against Harvard-Westlake in the state playoffs.
But, if Cajon doesn’t need to substitute like it was in the Mater Dei game, the Cowgirls will win. That’s a big if. And remember, Cajon will be coming off a whole week of rest, so that shouldn’t be an issue.