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Girls basketball: Spartans struggle against Yuma

December 12, 2001|By ERIC GALVAN, Sports Writer

A few days ago the Yuma and Central Union High girls basketball teams played a barn burner at the Brawley tournament, with Central getting a one-point victory.

On Tuesday the teams met in El Centro, with Yuma revenging the loss by beating Central 50-35.

The game had the early makings of another thriller as only two points separated the teams at the end of one quarter.

But 23 turnovers over the last three quarters killed the Spartans' chances of a season sweep of Yuma. Central finished with 27 turnovers.

"We pretty much beat ourselves with all those turnovers. We came out flat, committed those turnovers and were just outrebounded," said Spartan coach Kristina Contreras. "When you turn the ball over that many times, it's going to end up hurting you.

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"Yuma really came to play in this game. I think the difference between this game and the last game was that they were just more aggressive," said Contreras. "But even though we lost, I think our girls are starting to gel. We still have a couple things to work on, but they've been working real hard in practice and are continuing to get better."

What hurt Central was the Criminals' triumvirate of Jackie Johnson, Melissa Magin and Ashley Crawford, who combined for 43 of Yuma's 50 points. Johnson led all scorers with 20 points, Magin chipped in 12 and Crawford added 11.

Leading Central was guard Jocelyn Taylor with eight points, four steals and two blocks. Asheli Angelica scored eight points and Janiece Manuel added seven.

After his team's loss to Central last week, Yuma coach Justin Carlson said Manuel was one of the players he wanted to try to shut down. By attacking her with the offense and double- teaming her with the defense, Manuel got into foul trouble early and was almost a non-factor for most of the game.

"She's a pretty good player and we really wanted to shut her down. She got into foul trouble early and without her in the game, it made things easier for us," said Carlson. "We attacked her, then screened her out and just took her out of the game.

"I think this was a pretty good win for us. We came out flat the last time we played and this time we played four solid quarters of basketball. This time our kids were prepared and were able to get the win," said Carlson.

The Spartans fell to 3-5 on the season.

Central will host Kofa High of Yuma at 7 p.m. Friday.

Imperial 45, Mountain Empire 25

IMPERIAL — Alexa Olsowski scored 14 points and grabbed nine rebounds to lead Imperial to a 45-25 win over Mountain Empire here Tuesday.

Rhea Deal added 11 points for the Tigers (3-5).

Imperial returns to action at 6 p.m. Thursday at Yuma Catholic.

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