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Flintridge Prep girls' basketball holds off Westridge for share of title

Basketball: Rebels use big 10-0 fourth-quarter run for 53-38 Prep League victory on Wednesday.

February 12, 2014|By Andrew J. Campa, andrew.campa@latimes.com
  • Flintridge Prep's Lacy Coan and Westridge's Kayoko Fong battle for possession during Prep League game on Wednesday. (Roger Wilson/Staff Photographer)
Flintridge Prep's Lacy Coan and Westridge's…

LA CAÑADA — It was the competitiveness of the Prep League that both nearly took away and created a golden opportunity for the Flintridge Prep girls’ basketball team Wednesday afternoon.

PHOTOS: Flintridge Prep vs. Westridge girls' basketball

With a chance to clinch a share of the program’s first league title since 2008, the Rebels held off a strong challenge from feisty Westridge in a 53-38 victory on senior night in the regular season finale.

“We’re so ecstatic,” Rebels co-Coach Jayme Kiyomura-Chan said. “What we talked about in the locker room is that this was a crescendo over the course of the last two years. We couldn’t have done this without what we accomplished last year. This has been a growing process and I’m so proud of these girls.”

Because of the win, CIF Southern Section Division IV-A 10th-ranked Flintridge Prep (17-4 overall, 10-2 in league) takes a half-game lead over five-time reigning league champion Pasadena Poly (16-7, 9-2), which closes out its season Thursday at Chadwick.

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Should the Panthers lose, then the Rebels would clinch the title outright.

It was a Poly 53-44 upset loss at Mayfield on Tuesday that opened the door for the Rebels, who seemed to have a manageable opponent in visiting Westridge (5-12, 3-9).

However, the Tigers played well above their record and recovered from a 27-18 deficit early in the third quarter with a 12-2 run capped by an offensive rebound and put back from 6-foot-1 senior center Carmen Costa (seven points, 17 rebounds and three blocks) with 1:01 remaining, which both put the Tigers ahead, 30-29, and led to a Rebels’ timeout.

“I thought we took a lot of quick shots, I thought we took a lot of outside shoots,” Rebels co-Coach Kevin Kiyomura said. “That gave Westridge more opportunities to score and get back into the game. We got good stops, but when you have to come up with stop after stop after stop and you can’t hit a basket, it’s tough.”

While Wednesday was senior night, the Rebels turned to freshman Taylor Yoshida to put them back on track.

The guard delivered, first putting Flintridge Prep ahead, 32-30, at the close of three quarters with a triple from near the home bench that was set up on an assist from a slashing Lacy Coan.

Yoshida (10 points and three steals) then drained a three-pointer to open the fourth quarter created off an assist from senior Maya Okamoto, which put the Rebels ahead, 35-30.

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