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YOLO COUNTY NEWS
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DHS girls keep on winning, 81-31

DHS sophomore Katie Grahn hurdles a Yuba City defender to track down the ball in the Blue Devils’ 81-31 home win over the Honkers on Saturday. With the victory, Davis improved to 13-3 heading into conference play, which begins Tuesday. Wayne Tilcock/Enterprise photo

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From page B1 | January 06, 2013 |

When a so-so basketball team struggles against a good squad that’s on its game, the result can be horribly lopsided.

Such was the case on Saturday as the Davis High girls finished their nonleague schedule with an 81-31 wipeout of visiting Yuba City. It was the Lady Blue Devils’ sixth straight victory.

An enthusiastic crowd of more than 200 saw wave after wave of Devils excel in their court appearances as DHS won for the 13th time 16 games.

Blocking two of their opponents’ first two shots, the locals opened a 10-0 lead before ending the first period ahead 24-5.

And there was some fancy DHS play in this one …

Early on, Blue Devil center Emma Stenz’s slick rebound and put-back was augmented by Tori Powell’s steal and layup.

When Davis coach Karen Foster shifted gears and brought most of the remaining roster into play, the up-tempo, pressing pace continued. Katie Grahn and Caitlin Mazzoleni each scored four points and Kylie Drexel had a steal, assist and basket in the first period alone.

Mazzoleni’s second-quarter trey made the score 28-6 and when Stenz went hard inside for a basket and a good free throw, the Devils led 37-9.

Once intermission came, DHS was up 49-13 and getting good production from the regular cast:

* Powell was brilliant. Crashing into walls, diving for loose balls, playing audible defense, the senior co-captain had 16 points, four steals and three rebounds to go with her bandaged left elbow after taking on the gym’s west wall in the second period.

* Ashleigh Vandenbrink had 13 points, four boards, three assists, two blocks and three steals in limited playing time. An in-and-back baseline play that saw her score off of a Stenz assist was a thing of beauty.

* Mazzoleni, who scored 13 in Thursday’s win at Whitney, canned 12 on Saturday while grabbing four rebounds. In the first period, her rebound and turn-around jumper was textbook.

But this Delta Valley Conference warmup highlighted the depth that Foster thinks makes Davis a top contender for a league crown:

* Junior forward Grahn was rugged inside, scoring nine points, taking in three rebounds and dishing out an assist while recording two steals.

* Drexel had another six-point game, but it was her relentless presence with the ball and against her marked foe that made her stand taller than her 5-foot-4 frame. Two assists and three rebounds added to her limited floor time.

* And then there was junior center Jamie Kingsley. Making a mess of things for Yuba City under their own basket, Kingsley was the keeper of the flame at the other end, grabbing four offensive rebounds (seven boards altogether) and adding two buckets of her own to a blocked shot.

In the third period, Rachael Allison’s basket put DHS ahead 70-17 and a merciful running clock during the final eight minutes got fans, Devils and opponents home early.

It was complete domination for a local crew that hopes it will become even tougher as the season continues. Foster was concerned about physicality several weeks ago, but Davis, in controlling the boards 44-21 on Saturday, has now out-rebounded five straight foes.

Free throws, often an adventure, have been better (though 11-of-22 against Yuba City was a not-so-hot 50 percent) and the Blue Devil defense has evolved into one of the top units in the Sac-Joaquin Section.

So, is DHS ready for DVC play, which starts Tuesday at home with Elk Grove?

A little word association with second-year mentor Foster might tell the story:

League? “Prepared,” says the coach.

Inside? “Presence.”

Free throws? “Improving.”

Defense? “Outstanding.”

Notes: Davis had a spurts of 10-0, 14-2 and 11-0 in the game. … DHS teacher and golf coach Karl Ronning, who was the scoreboard operator, asked afterward, “Is that The System?” It was a reference to the Blue Devil boys’ offensive scheme that has them scoring at a 90 ppg clip. Come to think of it, there wasn’t a lot of difference Saturday — except the girls used their defense to create plenty of clean looks in the paint. DHS shot 33-of-72 (45 percent) against the Honkers, who were held to only 39 shots. Alysha Aery led Yuba with 13 points.

— Reach Bruce Gallaudet at bgallaudet@davisenterprise.net or 530-747-8047.

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Bruce Gallaudet

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