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AOW: Calipatria forward leads team to one of year's biggest upsets

January 29, 2002|By ERIC GALVAN

Sports Writer

Last week the Calipatria High girls basketball team put together one of its best three-game stretches in recent memory.

Yes, wins over Julian and Imperial were fairly important from a record standpoint. But what made the week as big as it was for Calipatria wasn't just those two wins but a win over Imperial Valley League defending champion Brawley Union High.

In a proverbial David vs. Goliath matchup, the smaller school Calipatria knocked off Brawley in what instantly became one of the biggest upsets in Hornet basketball history.

While it was a team-effort that helped Calipatria propel its play to the next level, the individual play of 16-year-old junior Lilia Humble was a main factor in the team's success.

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In the three-game set, Humble averaged a double-double, including game highs in scoring against Brawley and Julian.

While she scored 18 points and pulled down 11 rebounds against Julian in a 53-35 victory, it was the win over the Wildcats that stood out.

"That definitely was our biggest win, beating Brawley. Going into it I kind of had a feeling that if we played our game and everything went our way, we had a chance to beat them," said the 5-foot-9 Humble. "We knew that it'd be a challenge, but I got a feeling right before the game started that we were going to beat them."

Sure enough, Humble and her teammates did, holding a typically high-scoring Brawley offense to only 26 points and winning 31-26.

Humble finished with a game-high 11 points. While she may have been the leading scorer, she was still not satisfied with her play.

"I really do think I could've done better. But that's just the way I am. I'm always critical of myself, no matter what. I always know I can do better," she said. "But all that really matters is that we got the win."

With one of the toughest challenges out of the way, Humble and the Calipatria team can look down the road to the rest of league play and beyond.

"At the beginning of the year, it was kind of rough, but now everything's starting to come together," said Humble. "When we're all working together and everything's going right, I think we're great. We have a lot of talent on this team and everybody just has to perform. If we can do that, I think we'll do well in league and in CIF."

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