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Long Beach Poly Edges San Clemente

March 12, 2004|Martin Henderson, Mike Besack, Elia Powers

Quickness and defense have been the staples for Long Beach Poly all season, and they worked to the Jackrabbits' advantage again Thursday in a Southern California Regional semifinal -- barely.

Poly, ranked second in the Southland by The Times, took a 13-point lead into the fourth quarter and held off a furious comeback by third-ranked San Clemente for a 40-39 Division I victory at Long Beach Cabrillo.

Poly (30-2), which was led by Judith Smith's 17 points, will play second-seeded San Diego (30-3), a 74-43 winner over Newhall Hart, in the regional final at the Sports Arena on Saturday.

San Clemente (27-5) pulled to within 38-37 and had the ball with 20 seconds left. They inbounded to 6-foot-4 Lauren Riley, who promptly spun away from the basket and missed her shot. Poly's April Phillips rebounded the miss and converted two free throws with 15 seconds left after being fouled.

Lindsey Pluimer, averaging 24 points, finished with 10 and Lauren Redfield had 11 for San Clemente.

Martin Henderson


Fullerton Troy 62, Norco 52 -- Meghan McGuire, the Warriors' leading scorer, had only eight points in limited minutes at Cal State Fullerton because of a sprained ankle. She is questionable for the Division II regional final on Saturday against Santa Ana Mater Dei (19-11), a 55-46 winner over second-seeded Brea Olinda.

Top-seeded Troy (32-1) was led by Nicole Hayman's 22 points and seven rebounds.

Norco (28-5) standout Erika Arriaran was held to two-of-10 shooting in the fourth quarter and finished with 23 points.

Mike Besack


La Puente Bishop Amat 56, Pasadena Muir 49 -- Erin Myrick had a team-high 18 points on eight-of-13 shooting for the Lancers (30-3), whose victory at Industry Workman advanced them to the Division III regional final on Saturday against second-seeded Inglewood Morningside (31-3), a 59-54 winner over third-seeded San Diego Mission Bay.

Junior Tierra Henderson had 21 points, including four three-point baskets, for Muir (23-8), which made six of 17 free throws.

The top-seeded Lancers, who have won 30 games for the first time, beat Muir, 44-40, in the Southern Section Division III-A final Saturday.

-- Elia Powers

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