South Bay girls' basketball rivals Gardena Serra and Playa del Rey St. Bernard will face each other in Saturday's Southern California Regional Division IV championship on Saturday at 2 p.m. at Colony High in Ontario.
The top seed and host Lady Cavaliers advanced by eliminating Junipero Serra from San Juan Capistrano, 52-43, and No. 3 seed Vikings rolled over St. Monica, 75-52, Tuesday in Santa Monica.
The key to the Cavaliers' win over the Lions was a buzzer beating three-point basket by Deandrea Toler that gave them the lead for good.
In the fourth quarter, Serra pulled away for a 52-43 semifinal victory.
The shot was one of five three-point baskets for the Cavaliers, three of those by University of Michigan-bound senior guard Siera Thompson.
A three-pointer by Brooke Bayman gave Serra (28-6) a 45-40 lead with 1:56 left in the game.
Thompson sparked Serra with 18 points. Caila Hailey added 12 points, six rebounds and two blocked shots. Toler contributed 11 points, four assists and four steals. Tatiana Howard had 14 rebounds and four points.
St. Bernard was not at its best but it did not have much trouble with the Mariners, who entered the Regional Division IV playoffs as the second seed. St. Monica was the Southern Section Division IVA champion and the Vikings were the IVAA semifinals, after losing to the Open Division's top seed Mar Vista Windward on Feb. 22.
Junior Chayanne Butler proved dominant by leading all scorers with 29 points, 21 of those in the first half that led St. Bernard to a 51-25 halftime lead.
Cydney Bolton tallied nine points and six steals. Chanelle Pele totaled eight points and eight rebounds, and Lajahna Drummer grabbed 10 rebounds.
Boys Basketball: Bishop Montgomery, Redondo make finals; Serra, Westchester fall short: After being upset by La Verne Lutheran in the CIF-Southern Section Division IVAA semifinals on Feb. 22, Bishop Montgomery High's boys' basketball team hopes to redeem itself after advancing to Saturday's Southern California Regional Division IV championship game against West Hollywood Pacific Hills after ousting Carlsbad Army-Navy Academy, 75-54, in the semifinals Tuesday at Oceanside High.
The Knights easily defeated Army-Navy, despite playing without two key players in Lamond Murray, Jr. and Ognjen Miljkovic who were ejected after a fight in their quarterfinal game against Santa Maria St. Joseph.
In the mostly senior squad, it was Bishop Montgomery's two underclassmen in junior Justin Bibbins and sophomore Stephen Thompson, Jr. who put in 24 and 23 points, in order.
The Knights wasted little time on Army-Navy by racing out to an 11-1 first quarter bulge.
Senior Larry Taylor III had 12 points.
Bishop Montgomery, which improved to 31-1 and is ranked as high as eighth in the United States by prep sports publications, will face Pacific Hills at Colony High in Ontario Saturday at 4 p.m.
The Bruins advanced by stunning top seed Gardena Serra, 53-50, on Tuesday at L.A. Southwest College.
Down by seven points (41-34) in the fourth period, Pacific Hills went on a 13-5 run to grab a one-point lead efore the Cavaliers (26-7) took their last lead at 48-47 on a steal and breakaway layup by Ellis Salahuddin.
The Bruins came back with a 51-48 lead on baskets from Jonathan Mills and Namon Wright, but Ronald Freeman brought Serra's deficit to one point on his putback.
Wright, though, made two free throws and Salahuddin's potentitial three-pointer to send the game into overtime fell short.
Salahuddin led the Cavaliers with 15 points. Tavrion Dawson had 13 points and Freeman chipped in nine points, eight of those in the fourth quarter.
Serra was the CIF-Southern Section Division IVAA champion after downing La Verne Lutheran, 70-52, and Pacific Hills won the IVA title over Brentwood on March 2 at the Anaheim Convention Center Arena.
Surprising Redondo advanced to its first Southern California Regional final in six years after eliminating San Diego Hoover, 60-52, on Tuesday at Redondo.
The win for the Sea Hawks (26-8) was their 19th straight and they will seek to win their first ever regional crown and make their first trip to the March 22 California State final when they take on J.W. North from Riverside at the Citizens Bank Arena in Ontario Saturday at noon. North topped Westlake, 58-50, in the other semifinal.
Keying Redondo was junior point guard Ian Fox with a game-high 22 points, including a key three-point basket in the fourth quarter that gave the Sea Hawks a 49-47 lead after the CIF-San Diego Section champion Cardinals (31-6) took a 47-46 lead, rallying from a 15-2 first quarter deficit.
Tyrone Johnson came back with a three-pointer to give Hoover a 50-49 lead, but Derek Biale's three-pointer gave Redondo a 52-50 lead. Johnson tied it with a basket, but Biale's basket gave the Sea Hawks the lead for good.
Biale finished with 17 points.
"Our coach (Reggie Morris, Jr.) came out with a great game plan," Biale said. "We came out and played. We did what we needed to do. We'll pracitice the next three days and give it our best shot."
The Sea Hawks won the CIF-Southern Section Division IIA crown over Westlake, 68-63, and the Huskies captured the Division IIAA crown over Villa Park, 59-58, on March 2 at the Anaheim Arena.
Leading Hoover was sophomore Jordan Alexander with 21 points.
CIF-Los Angeles City Division I champion Westchester was eliminated in the Open Division semifinals by host Etiwanda, 56-46, on Tuesday.
The Comets had trouble with the Eagles, who won the Southern Section Division IAA crown with back-to-back wins over nationally ranked Long Beach Poly and Santa Ana Mater Dei, falling behind, 35-17, at halftime and were unable to catch up.
Matthew Grant led Westchester, which finished its season at 29-7, with 13 points. Nick Hamilton contributed eight points.
Etiwanda and Santa Ana Mater Dei, which rolled over Long Beach Poly 61-41 in their semifinal, has their rematch for the Southern California Open crown on Saturday at 8 p.m. at the Citizens Bank Arena.
The Eagles topped the Monarchs, 54-51, for the Southern Section Division IAA title on March 2 at the Anaheim Arena.
Southern California Regional Playoff Results:
Wednesday, March 6:
Division II: Redondo 64, Bakersfield Garces Memorial 48; Hanford West 68, Mira Costa 59; Thousand Oaks 69, Gardena 59.
Division III: Leuzinger 75, L.A. Hamilton 58.
Division IV: Bishop Montgomery 87, Coalinga 24.
Division V: San Gabriel Academy 61, Rolling Hills Prep 36.
Division I: Narbonne 45, Ventura 43.
Division II: Bakersfield Ridgeview 64, Redondo 47; Granada Hills 48, Culver City 46 (Overtime).
Division IV: St. Bernard 64, Animo South L.A. 22; La Jolla Bishop's 67, Bishop Montgomery 61.
Saturday, March 9:
Open Division: Westchester 60, Fresno Bullard 58.
Division II: Redondo 63, Thousand Oaks 56 (Overtime).
Division III: San Diego St. Augustine 65, Leuzinger 45.
Division IV: Serra 65, Chula Vista Mater Dei 49; Bishop Montgomery 70, Santa Maria St. Joseph 44.
Division I: Bishop Amat 50, Narbonne 39.
Division IV: Serra 61, St. Bonaventure 39; St. Bernard 70, Bishop's 64.
Tuesday, March 12:
Open Division: Etiwanda 56, Westchester 46.
Division II: Redondo 60, San Diego Hoover 52.
Division IV: Bishop Montgomery 75, Carlsbad Army-Navy Academy 54; Pacific Hills 53, Serra 50.
Division IV: Gardena Serra 52, San Juan Capistrano Serra 43; St. Bernard 75, St. Monica 52.
Southern California Regional Championship Games:
Saturday, March 16:
Division II at Citizens Bank Arena, Ontario: Redondo vs. Riverside J.W. North, noon.
Division IV at Ontario Colony High: Bishop Montgomery vs. Pacific Hills, 4 p.m.
Division IV at Colony High: Serra vs. St. Bernard, 2 p.m.