Griffin JV reaches title game at VP tourney

Los Al had 11-game winning streak leading into the final

Pictured, back row, left to right: Varsity Head Coach Maya Kennedy, Bryn Pagett, Mikayla Aguayo, Dani Townzen, Karly Padova, Katie Nakagawa, and JV Head Coach Patrick Kennedy. Front row, left to right: Mariko Nagata, Brooke Tomooka, Sammi Nakahara, Ava Duarte, Kaia Kanegai, and Kaili Burke.

The Los Alamitos High School Girls JV Basketball team’s 11-game win streak came to an end in a close, hard-fought 49-37 loss to Mater Dei in the championship game of the Villa Park High School Tournament.

In the Thursday, December 30, contest, the JV Griffins were led in scoring by Katie Nakagawa with 13 points and Kaili Burke with 6 points. Including 10 preseason wins, the JV Griffins (11-1) had won 21 straight games since September.

The first half ended with Mater Dei ahead 23-21, but early in the third quarter the Griffins tied the game 23-23. Mater Dei regained the lead, but the score difference stayed within single digits throughout the third quarter and into the fourth quarter before Mater Dei pulled away to win by 12.

The Griffins took an early lead to start the game, but the first quarter ended with Los Al down 17-7. In the second quarter, the Griffins fought back and outscored Mater Dei 14-6, to trail by only 2 at half. In that quarter, Nakagawa scored 6 points, and Ava Duarte chipped in 4.

The Griffins out rebounded Mater Dei, 45-31, led by the strong play of Bryn Pagett with 15 rebounds and Dani Townzen with 11 rebounds.

For the four-game tournament, Nakagawa averaged 10.3 points per game, followed by Townzen, who averaged 7.3 points. Pagett averaged 14.7 rebounds a game and Townzen grabbed 11 rebounds a game.