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Rebels run away in end

Basketball: Prep, Webb girls exchange runs late as Rebels hold on for 38-29 victory Tuesday.

January 11, 2012|By Andrew Shortall, andrew.shortall@latimes.com

LA CAÑADA FLINTRIDGE — The Flintridge Prep girls' basketball team could have folded when Webb scored eight straight points to cut a 10-point deficit to two early in the fourth quarter.

Instead, the Rebels responded with a run of their own to pull out a 38-29 Prep League victory at home Tuesday night.

Prep Coach Todd Frost said the key to the win was not getting rattled.

"In that fourth quarter when it got close, they could have freaked out, gotten nervous and played scared, but they didn't," Frost said. "They continued to do the things we wanted them to do and it paid off with a victory."

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Flintridge Prep (5-9, 1-2 in league) never trailed in the low-scoring affair, but came close to losing the lead when a 10-2 Webb run cut Prep's advantage to 25-23 eight seconds into the fourth quarter.

"One of the things we preach to them is it's a long game and teams are going to make runs," Frost said. "You can't let the past affect the future. If they made a mistake and the other team made a basket they had to let it go and make the next play."

The Rebels' Maya Okamoto made sure her team never lost the lead as she scored eight of her game-high 13 points in the fourth quarter. She accounted for all but five of her team's points in the final quarter.

Gabby Zen put an end to the Gauls' run with a low-post bucket, increasing Prep's lead to 27-23. Okamoto forced a steal on the ensuing possession and raced down the floor to lay it up and in with 6:45 remaining. Okamoto finished with a game-high 13 points, eight of which came in the fourth quarter.

Webb (4-5, 0-3 in league) kept the game close, as Connie Zhang nailed a jumper to bring the score to 30-26 with 4:25 left. Then Okamoto forced a Gauls turnover and cashed in a three-pointer. Okamoto nailed another three on Prep's next possession, following another Webb turnover, giving the Rebels a 36-26 lead with 3:10 to go.

About a minute later, Kimberly Kim hit two free throws for the Rebels, giving them the biggest lead of the game, 38-26.

"I don't think any of the girls panicked so that was good," said Okamoto of Webb's late push. "We just kind of did what we had to do."

The Gauls' 10-2 run, which started in the middle of the third quarter and carried over to the start of the fourth, followed a 7-0 run from Prep in the third quarter, which started with a bucket from Okamoto. Then the Rebels' Katherine Bogaard nailed a three-pointer at the end of the shot clock to give her team a 10-point lead, 21-13.

Flintridge Prep's Kinsey Thompson scored on the next trip down the floor to give the Rebels a 23-13 edge — the biggest lead of the game — before Webb made its run with five minutes left in the third.

"We hit shots at key times," Frost said. "We didn't make a lot of them, but we seemed to hit them in the right spots when we needed that big play to happen."

Prep was never without the lead Tuesday as it took a 9-5 lead at the end of the first quarter, behind five points from Bogaard, who finished with 11 points and three three-pointers. The lead was increased to 16-11 at halftime.

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