Lady Broncos finish second, host CIF playoff game today

Special to The CambrianFebruary 17, 2014 

First-year head coach Emilie Foster has her team in the CIF playoffs. Here Foster uses a time out to instruct and motivate her players during a recent home game.

MERLE BASSETT — Special to The Cambrian

This story has been updated to reflect a change in the tip-off time; the playoff game is now set to start at 6 p.m.

Thanks to achieving a second-place finish in the Coast Valley League, the 7-3 Lady Broncos basketball team has an invitation to the post-season tournament. They play a home game at 6 p.m. today, Feb. 20, against Shalhevet High School.

“The ladies on my team are improving with each game and they are excited to host Shalhevet Thursday night,” said first-year Head Coach Emilie Foster.

Coast Union’s seventh victory in league play — assuring that CIF playoff spot — was over the Cuyama Valley Lady Bears, 61-34, on Friday, Feb. 14. And it was a sweet win, not just because it was Valentine’s Day, but because Foster told her team the second half of play against those Bears was “the greatest 16 minutes of basketball you have played all season!”

In that second half, Cuyama Valley was outscored 41-13, thanks to what Foster called “half-time adjustments.”  The coach pointed out that seven players scored for Coast Union in the game.

Sophomores Reagan Kniffen (15 points) and Rima Panchal (12 points) led the scoring for the Lady Broncos. Ahtziri Mora, a freshman, chipped in with 10 points.

Junior Crystal Nunez had eight points, as did senior Bianca Chavez. Karely Ochoa, a junior, scored six points and “everyone had at least one steal,” Foster noted.

Foster gave “Player of the Game” honors to Rima Panchal, who had “the best game of her career … she single-handedly shut down Cuyama’s big scorer in the second half.”

Email John FitzRandolph at johnfitz44@yahoo.com.

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