ELK GROVE — For anybody who’s seen the Davis High girls play basketball during the past seven weeks, it doesn’t come as a surprise that the Lady Blue Devils rolled over homestanding Elk Grove, 60-41, on Friday night.
The DHS win gives the locals a perfect 10-0 mark in Delta Valley Conference play (20-6 overall) and ensures a first-round home playoff game on Tuesday.
Ranked sixth in D-I by officials of the Sac-Joaquin Section, the Devils have traveled a long road since last year’s 8-19 speed bump of a season.
Not only did the Devils, early this winter, find a way to win again, they overcame a controversial mid-schedule coaching change. With interim coach Dennis Foster at the helm, DHS tweaked its once-methodical offense to the point where Davis is scoring numbers not seen in these parts for two decades.
Hitting on all cylinders, the Blue Devils twice beat powerhouse Franklin in owning the once-mighty DVC.
Davis will be home on Tuesday for a first-round playoff game.
“I’m not sure who we’ll play,” Foster, who doubles as DHS’ athletic director, said Saturday. “As it stands, we’re seeded against Franklin, but they won’t let us play a school from the same league.
“My best guess is Pleasant Grove (Delta River League No. 3 at 17-10). But the way (CIF) moves people around, you never know.”
At 2 p.m. today, CIF is expected to announce playoff brackets. While Armijo, Oak Ridge and Turlock (Nos. 3, 4 and 5 ahead of Davis) have won each of their last three games, losses by St. Francis (to St. Mary’s) and Lincoln of Stockton (to the Troubadours) shouldn’t impact the current pecking order.
But with an 11-game winning streak, the Blue Devils have made their claim for a higher seeding come bracket selection. Remember, DHS beat Armijo, 62-59, on the road on Dec. 4.
And Friday night, the Devils made a final, regular-season statement.
Up 36-15 at the half, Foster called the dogs off and cruised home. Again, the Wilkins twins — Malika and Khaliya — were the offensive catalysts.
Malika Wilkins canned 27 points, using four 3-point baskets to punctuate her performance. Khaliya Wilkins had 10 points and dished out assists on five other buckets.
Starters Ali Campos (10 points), Ashleigh Vandenbrink (six points and 10 rebounds) and Sarah Sadler (four points and six boards) played their normal rock-solid defense — holding Thundering Herd star guard Lauren Chetner to one point.
Becca Pasqual managed 10 points to lead The Grove (5-20, 2-8).
Notes: Rounding out DHS’ scoring were Lisa Robison (two) and Lauren Blackwell (one). Blackwell added four rebounds. … Since losing the first half (and that game, 75-51) to St. Francis on Jan. 6, the Devils went on to outscore the Troubies, 34-32, in that second half — and haven’t looked back with 11 straight wins. What did Foster say at halftime of his first game as interim coach? “I tried to have the girls focus on basketball. On the court … there was so much going on off the court. They’ve done a really good job doing that.”
— Reach Bruce Gallaudet at [email protected] or (530) 747-8047. Comment on this story at www.davisenterprise.com