Guards Off to Semis!

February 28, 2009 by  

BURBANK – No. 1 Bell-Jeff to take on No. 4 Chadwick on the road. If an opponent can’t stop the Bellarmine-Jefferson High girls’ basketball team early in a game, it’s likely they will get steam rolled.

The Guards have enjoyed their share of quick starts this season, which have left more than a few opposing teams writhing in their wake.

St. Margaret’s is the latest victim to feel the wrath of the Bell-Jeff offensive juggernaut.

The Guards jumped out to a big first-quarter lead Wednesday and increased that to a substantial advantage at halftime to defeat the host Tartans, 74-26, in a CIF Southern Section Division VA quarterfinal game.

Bell-Jeff began the game with a 23-6 run in the first quarter and enjoyed a 42-12 lead at the half.

“I think some teams come out against us early and kinda see what we’re going to do,” said Bell-Jeff Coach Bryan Camacho, whose team has won 14 games in a row. “When they’re tentative like that, that’s when we’re able to get rolling and get those big leads.”

It was the third straight season the Guards (28-1) have advanced to the quarterfinals.

The win puts the No. 1-seeded Guards — the Santa Cruz League champion — into the semifinals for the second consecutive season.

Bell-Jeff will take on No. 4-seeded Chadwick at 2 p.m. today in a final-four matchup at L.A. Harbor College in Harbor City.

The Dolphins (23-3) won the Prep League championship.

Chadwick advanced to today’s game after beating Bishop Diego, 45-33, Wednesday in a quarterfinal game. The Dolphins had a first-round bye and defeated Frazier Mountain, 60-22, in a second-round game.

Chadwick is paced by sophomore Haley Buch, who averages nearly 16 points and 11 rebounds a game. The team also has a solid player in Breanna Madrazo (nearly 14 points a game).

“Chadwick is a pretty solid team and they have some girls who can shoot the ball,” Camacho said. “They also can shoot the three-pointer.

“But we feel fortunate to be in the position that we’re in, and we’re going to do everything in our power to keep it going.”

The Guards and Dolphins have a common opponent in St. Anthony. Chadwick — which has won 17 of its last 18 games — beat the Saints in a nonleague game, 41-28. In two league games, Bell-Jeff defeated St. Anthony, 58-41, and 68-38.

Against St. Margaret’s (18-8), which placed first in the Academy League, reigning All-Area Player of the Year Shelley Gupilan scored 12 of her 20 points in the first quarter to pace the Guards.

Margeaux Gupilan added 13 points, Elizabeth Hawthorne chipped in 12 and Rashonda Napier had 10 for Bell-Jeff, which defeated Sherman Indian, 87-22, in its CIF opener.

By Jeff Tully

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One Response to “Guards Off to Semis!”

  1. Helen Else on March 5th, 2009 3:40 pm

    Congratulations Ladies for your great season, and good luck on Saturday at finals we will be there to cheer you on!!!! Go Guards!!!

    Great job Coaches

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