PREP BASKETBALL: Lady Falcons clinch share of CVCL title | TheUnion.com

PREP BASKETBALL: Lady Falcons clinch share of CVCL title

The Union staff

Forest Lake Christian's girls basketball team clinched at least a share of the Central Valley California League title after topping Woodland Christian, 55-35, Friday night.

The Lady Falcons got off to a strong start and took a 22-11 lead into halftime. FLC extended its lead to 39-21 after three before closing out their ninth straight win overall and 12th straight in league play.

The win improves the Lady Falcons to 18-5 overall and 12-0 in league play with just two games left. FLC needs one more victory or another loss by Woodland Christian (20-5, 10-2 CVCL) to win the league outright.

Leading the Lady Falcons on Friday was senior forward Lily Sween with 20 points, 11 steals and nine rebounds. Junior guard Amber Jackson added 17 points, eight rebounds, six steals and three assists. Junior point guard Ali McDaniel followed with 10 points, eight rebounds, six assists and four steals. And, Ellie Wood chipped in eight points, 10 rebounds and five steals.

Next up for the Lady Falcons is a road game at Encina Prep Tuesday. They close the regular season Friday against Sacramento Waldorf at home.

BOYS BASKETBALL

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FOREST LAKE CHRISTIAN 69,

WOODLAND CHRISTIAN 54

The Falcons took a big step toward a playoff berth and earned a critical league over Woodland Christian Friday.

Facing a team that had beat them earlier this season, FLC battled its way to a 28-23 halftime lead. The Falcons extended the lead to 44-37 after three and put it away by outscoring Woodland Christian 25-17 in the fourth.

The Falcons were balanced in their attack as four players scored in double figures and nine Falcons notched points. Leading the way was junior guard Simon Blackburn with a game-high 17 points, including four made 3-pointers, Blackburn also notched seven rebounds, four assists and three steals in the game. Junior forward J.R. Molloy followed with 16 points, 16 rebounds and five assists. Junior guard Eli DeYoung chipped in 11 points. Senior guard Daniel Hanson added 10 points. And, junior guard Luke Gilliland finished with eight points.

The Falcons (14-11, 7-5 CVCL) now sit in third place in the league standings, one game ahead of Woodland Christian (15-9, 6-6) and a game behind second place Sacramento Waldorf (19-6, 8-4). Foresthill (16-8, 11-1) has already clinched the CVCL title.

Next up for FLC is a road bout at Encina Prep on Tuesday. The Falcons wrap the regular season at home Friday against Sacramento Waldorf.

PONDEROSA 53, NEVADA UNION 36

Nevada Union's boys basketball team couldn't keep up with a hot shooting Ponderosa squad Friday night at Albert Ali Gymnasium.

The two Foothill Valley League combatants were locked in a tight battle in the first half with the Miners trailing by just three, 21-18, at halftime. Ponderosa came out of the break hot and went on a 16-4 run to grab a 37-22 lead with about 3 minutes left in the third quarter.

The Miners responded with a 10-2 run to end the third and headed to the final stanza down 39-32.

In the fourth, NU struggled to score and Ponderosa had no such problem. The Bruins closed the game on a 14-4 run to earn the victory.

Leading the Miners was senior David O'Looney with 16 points. Senior guard Ryan Werner added nine points, and senior guard Riley Japhet-Gekas chipped in eight points.

It was Senior Night at Albert Ali Gymnasium, and the Miners recognized their five seniors (O'Looney, Werner, Japhet-Gekas, Jordan Mills and Casey Ackerman) ahead of the game.

"I'm so proud of this group of seniors," NU head coach Mark Casey said after the game. "Three of them (O'Looney, Werner, Japhet-Gekas) became starters this year, first year they started at the varsity level. Casey Ackerman, I wish more people knew about what he brings to this team. He's our glue guy. He's super positive. He works as hard as anyone else every single day. And, Jordan Mills works as hard as anyone else every single day. But really a nice group to coach."

The loss drops the Miners to 11-15 overall and 4-4 in FVL play. The Miners have two league games left, both of which are on the road. NU travels to Lincoln to face the Zebras on Wednesday, and closes at Rio Linda next Friday.

Coaches may submit game reports by email at wford@theunion.com or by phone at 530-477-4232.

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