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PAUL BERSEBACH, ORANGE COUNTY REGISTER
Woodbridge's Emma Shimizu drives for a layup against University on Friday. The senior point guard was instrumental in her team's comeback victory.
See more photos from this game in the OCVarsity Hot Shots slideshow.

Shimizu, Woodbridge rally to down University

OCVARSITY.COM

Woodbridge girls basketball coach Pete Belanto had been sick in bed the past three days and his Warriors came out sluggish for their Pacific Coast League game against University, which was trying on Friday night at Woodbridge High to avenge its league loss to the Warriors.

That's not usually a formula for victory, but senior point guard Emma Shimizu helped No. 8 Woodbridge erase an eight-point deficit in the second half and pull out a 49-45 victory to remain undefeated in league.

"We kind of go as Emma goes," Belanto said. "When she's going and getting the ball and moving the ball we're usually pretty good.

"She wasn't very much into the game early on, but late in the third (quarter) she started playing a little bit. When Sarah (Lipton) fouled out, that puts a little more pressure on her and she is always up to the task. She's a great player. She's incredible."

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SLIDESHOW: OCVarsity Hot Shots: Friday's basketball games

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Woodbridge (20-3, 6-0) held a 21-20 edge at halftime, but there were three lead changes in the first minute of the third quarter in the midst of an 11-2 run by the Trojans. Junior guard Emily Reiland scored eight of her 16 points in the third quarter as University (13-9, 3-3) forged a 31-23 lead.

The Warriors trimmed University's lead to 35-31 heading into the fourth quarter, but Lipton, the team's leading scorer, fouled out with 6:01 remaining and the Warriors trailing, 36-33.

Shimizu, who started to generate offense with her passing, found Patricia Zhao for a 3-pointer that tied it, 36-36, with 5:45 remaining. Reiland answered quickly for a 38-36 University advantage. Zhao's offensive put back tied it, 38-38, with 3:01 remaining.

Kelli Robinson knocked down a long 3-pointer from NBA range that gave Woodbridge a 41-38 lead with 2:37 left. The Warriors would not relinquish the lead for the remainder of the game.

In another Pacific Coast League:

Irvine 50, Northwood 38: Deven Hidalgo and Brittany Lambeth scored 16 and 15 points, respectively, as the Vaqueros (14-8, 4-2) defeated the visiting Timberwolves (14-7, 1-5).

In the Century League:

No. 10 Foothill 54, Villa Park 42: Hailey James scored a season-high 29 points to lead the Knights (17-6, 7-2), ranked No. 8 in Division 1A, past the visiting Spartans (10-10, 4-5).

No. 9 El Dorado 73, El Modena 41: The sophomore duo of Jaylin Jones and Brooke Salas scored 23 and 19 points, respectively, for the visiting Golden Hawks (20-3, 7-2).

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Contact the writer: carias@ocregister.com


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