Lady Lancers shooting for respect on the court, Metro-Pacific League hoops championship

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The Metro-Pacific League could have a new girls basketball champion this year, and it could be the Hilltop Lady Lancers.

“Defense is our main forte,” Hilltop veteran head coach Ray Jindra explained following Tuesday’s 59-25 win at Castle Park. “Defense wins championships. I told the girls that if we could play good defense, we would win.”

The Lady Lancers are pretty good on offense as well. Hilltop led 35-10 at halftime and 45-14 entering the final quarter.

The victors extended their league record to 3-0 and improved to 16-5 overall on the season.

Hilltop entered Tuesday’s game ranked first in the San Diego Section Division III power rankings.

“The girls are real proud of that,” Jindra noted.

Breeana Garafe led Hilltop with 12 points in Tuesday’s win over Castle Park (0-3 in league play, 2-18 overall) while teammate Anissa Tolbert contributed 11 points.

Garafe also finished the game with six assists and nine steals while playing in just the first half.

Brittany Gafare collected six rebounds in the win.

The win was the 568th in Jindra’s coaching career. He noted Hilltop has not won a league title in girls basketball since 1981.

That could be decided soon. The Lady Lancers host Chula Vista and Sweetwater next Wednesday and Friday, respectively, as league play comes to a close in advance of the divisional playoffs.

Both games tip off at 6 p.m.

In another game on Tuesday:

Eastlake 50, Bonita Vista 34
The host Lady Titans overcame a 12-7 first quarter deficit to overpower the Lady Barons in the teams’ rivalry game. Eastlake piled up a 28-16 scoring edge in the middle two periods to take a 35-28 lead into the final quarter. The hosts then sealed the win with a 15-6 scoring edge in the final quarter.

The Lady Titans’ Maya Robinson led all scorers in the game with 17 points, followed by the Bonita Vista tandem of Carol Schroeder (16 points) and Daeshya Battle (10 points).

Eastlake (21-6 overall) remained atop the Metro-Mesa League standings with a 6-0 record while Bonita Vista (14-7 overall) fell to 2-3 in league play.

Team scoring leaders for the Lady Titans through 25 games included Robinson (12.4 points per game) and Olivia Klugg (11.1 ppg).

Schroeder entered Tuesday’s game averaging 13.2 points per game.

Metro Conference
Girls Basketball Standings
(Through Feb. 15)

Metro-Pacific League
Hilltop 4-0, 17-5
Chula Vista 3-1, 8-14
Sweetwater 1-3, 9-15
Castle Park 0-4, 2-19

Metro-Mesa League
Eastlake 6-1, 21-6
Mater Dei Catholic 6-1, 15-8
Bonita Vista 3-3, 15-8
Olympian 1-5, 10-12
Otay Ranch 0-6, 4-20

Metro-South Bay League

Montgomery 4-0, 18-6
Southwest 3-1, 7-14
San Ysidro 1-3, 6-19
Mar Vista 0-4, 5-15

Crusaders improve to 6-0 in Metro-Mesa League boys hoops play

Sophomore Josh Towhiao poured in a team-high 20 points and classmates Trey Anderson and Miles Norris added 18 and 12 points, respectively, to lift the Mater Dei Catholic High School boys basketball team to a 61-52 Metro-Mesa League victory against the visiting Otay Ranch Mustangs on Tuesday.

The Crusaders used a strong third quarter — out-scoring the Mustangs 14-4 — to power to the win. Otay Ranch led, 17-10, at the end of the first quarter before Mater Dei Catholic battled back to take a tenuous 33-32 halftime lead.

Towhiao sank five of 11 three-point shot attempts in the game for the Crusaders while Anderson and Norris each grabbed nine rebounds.

Junior Clifford Kidd had five assists while Anderson added three steals.

The Mustangs dropped to 2-4 in league play, 9-16 overall.

Mater Dei Catholic sits seventh in the San Diego Section Division I power rankings while Otay Ranch is 11th in the Division III power rankings.

Bonita Vista, second in the Metro-Mesa League standings (13-10 overall), is sixth in the Division III power rankings.

Metro Conference
Boys Basketball Standings
(Through Feb. 15)

Metro-Pacific League
Castle Park 3-1, 8-14
Sweetwater 3-1, 8-16
Hilltop 2-2, 11-15
Chula Vista 0-4, 8-18

Metro-Mesa League
Mater Dei Catholic 7-0, 7-17
Bonita Vista 3-3, 14-11
Eastlake 3-4, 10-17
Otay Ranch 2-4, 9-16
Olympian 1-5, 7-19

Metro-South Bay League
San Ysidro 4-0, 24-4
Montgomery 3-1, 17-8
Southwest 1-3, 6-20
Mar Vista 0-4, 4-17

Lancers on fire after 0-14 start to 2015-16 boyd soccer season, lead Metro-Pacific League standings with 3-0 record

After an 0-14 start to the 2015-16 high school boys soccer season, the Hilltop Lancers suddenly find themselves on top of the Metro-Pacific League standings with a 3-0-0 record after dealing visiting Castle Park a 1-0 loss on Tuesday.

Hampton Erwin scored the game-winning goal in the 75th minute, assisted by Ugarte Maximiliano. Noah Natividad made 12 saves to record the shutout victory. The win was the Lancers’ fourth consecutive as Hilltop improved to 4-14 on the season.

Metro Conference
Boys Soccer Standings
(Through Feb. 15)
Metro-Pacific League

Hiltop 4-0-0, 5-14-0
Chula Vista 2-1-1, 6-8-6
Sweetwater 1-3-0, 6-8-2
Castle Park 0-3-1, 7-9-2

Metro-Mesa League
Mater Dei Catholic 6-1-0, 11-8-1
Eastlake 4-2-1, 12-5-4
Bonita Vista 3-1-2, 9-4-4
Olympian 0-4-2, 2-9-8
Otay Ranch 0-5-1, 5-10-1

Metro-South Bay League
San Ysidro 3-1-0, 11-3-2
Southwest 2-1-1, 10-5-4
Montgomery 2-1-1, 9-4-5
Mar Vista 0-4-0, 3-15-1

Metro Conference
Girls Soccer Standings
(Through Feb. 15)
Metro-Pacific League

Chula Vista 3-0-1, 13-4-2
Hilltop 2-0-1, 4-10-3
Castle Park 1-3-0, 9-8-3
Sweetwater 0-3-0, 6-11-0

Metro-Mesa League
Eastlake 4-1-2, 12-2-4
Bonita Vista 4-1-1, 11-8-3
Olympian 3-2-1, 16-4-3
Otay Ranch 2-2-2, 7-9-2
Mater Dei Catholic 0-7-1, 7-14-2

Metro-South Bay League
Southwest 4-0-0, 9-7-1
Montgomery 1-1-1, 11-5-2
San Ysidro 0-2-1, 4-9-1
Mar Vista 0-2, 2-12-3

Lady Lancers shooting for respect on the court, Metro-Pacific League hoops championship