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Plenty of good games in O.C. this week
The mileage has been racked up throughout the county.
Laguna Beach’s girls basketball team spent last week competing in a tournament on Hawaii’s big island. Esperanza and Woodbridge boarded flights to Orlando, Fla., for a three-day showcase. Troy played in Texas, and Orange Lutheran nearly left Arizona with another tournament title.
Having an opportunity to travel and play competition from around the country is one of the perks of the winter break. With school back in session, team bus rides become part of the routine and the opponents and gyms become more familiar.
League play begins this week for a majority of the county’s team, but this week’s schedule includes a handful of intriguing nonleague matchups.
On Saturday, No. 3 Troy will host No. 4 Fairmont Prep at 4 p.m., and No. 6 Orange Lutheran plays at No. 5 Orangewood Academy at 7 p.m.
All four teams played in Southern Section championship games a year ago, with Fairmont, Orangewood and Orange Lutheran walking away as CIF champs.
Orangewood Academy and Orange Lutheran faced off twice last season, with Orange Lutheran winning both encounters by slim margins. Orangewood is 0-4 against Trinity League opponents the last three seasons, and it is still looking for its first win against the county’s power league.
BATTLE IN THE POST
Mater Dei center Ally Rosenblum scored a career-high 38 points against Palisades of Pacific Palisades on Saturday in the Matt Denning Classic.
While the UCLA-bound senior dominated the paint, her point total wasn’t the highest output by a Trinity League player last week.
Rosary’s Becky Obinma put up 40 points and grabbed 26 boards against Orosi in the Garden Grove Winter Classic. The 6-foot-2 sophomore already had a 30-20 game on her resume from earlier this season.
With forward Nikki Miller leading the Royals in scoring, the Rosary-Mater Dei game on Thursday will put three of the county’s most skilled post players on the court at the same time.
Miller and Obinma are averaging a combined 27.8 points per game, while Rosenblum is second in the county with an average of 19.4 points per outing.
“At first I was struggling a little bit, but again, my teammates are doing a really good job of getting me the ball,” Rosenblum said of being the team’s new primary option.
“I think last year we did a good job of getting (Katie Lou Samuelson) the ball. We all had opportunities because people liked to double her. So when teams pack the post, we have really great guards who capitalize the same way this year.”
Woodbridge finished in third place at last week’s KSA Events Holiday Tournament in Orlando, Fla.
In the final two games of the showcase, Warriors sophomore forward Anjali Ghadi scored 18 and 30 points, sinking a combined nine 3-pointers in the two outings.
Ghadi was named the bracket’s most valuable player.
She wasn’t the only member of her family to earn such an award last week.
Vik Ghadi, Anjali’s older brother, garnered tournament MVP honors for Woodbridge’s boys team at the Las Vegas Prep Championships.
Not a bad week on the court for the Ghadi family.
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