Girls Basketball: El Monte moves into first Mission Valley League with win over rival South El Monte

By John Honell
El Monte hasn’t hung a Mission Valley League girls basketball championship banner in its gym since 1991.
The school isn’t ready to hoist the banner quite yet but, its 41-29 win Wednesday night over South El Monte has put the Lions in sole possession of first place.
The Lions defense was the key to the win as it held high scoring Dorothy Tuala to eight points, all of them in the first half.
Sophomore Emmy Pham led the Lions (10-6, 3-0) in scoring with 16 points but her real contribution came on the defensive end where she fronted Tuala and helped hold her scoreless in the second half.
The Eagles (11-6, 2-1) used a 12-3 run to close the second quarter taking a two-point lead into the locker room at the break.
El Monte coach Christine Butler: “We were going to front her (Tuala) and get good weak side help. If they were going to try and pound it in to her we were going to have two people on her and force their outside girls to look for some shots.”
South El Monte coach Jose Herrera: “Our offense goes through Dorothy. (Pham) did a phenomenal job on Dorothy, credit to her, but I’m proud of the way our kids fought back. The school has only won one game in the last four years and the all-time school record for wins in a season is 12, so we’re in uncharted waters.”

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  • MVL

    Nice to see South finally competing in league