The Mission Prep girls basketball team is being called back to the court.
Royals girls basketball coach John Krossa had already given the go-ahead for his players to stow their high tops and start playing spring sports after a quarterfinal loss to Oaks Christian in the CIF-Southern Section Division 4A playoffs last month.
But Mission Prep (22-6) is being reassembled to give it one last go in the state playoffs.
“We knew that we had a slight chance,” said Krossa, whose team was the last one chosen for the 13-team Division IV Southern California regionals Sunday. “They told us it was like a one-in-nine chance, and knowing that, I told the girls go play softball, go play track. If we find out, we’ll start practicing.”
The Royals will play No. 4 seed Bishop Montgomery (22-10) in Torrance on Tuesday at 7 p.m. The Atascadero boys, who bowed out in the semifinals of the 4AA playoffs with a 75-63 loss to Orange Lutheran, were passed over.
In its first year of transition back to the Southern Section, Mission Prep gets the program’s first state playoff berth in Division IV.
The Royals have made six state title games, all in Division V.
Bishop Montgomery, which fell 68-46 to Windward in the Division 4AA title game, is led by 6-foot-1 junior Devon Brookshire, who averages better than 15 points and eight rebounds per game.
“We’ve got to come in and play one of our best games of the year,” Krossa said, “but we’re going into it like this is just gravy. We had a phenomenal season, and now, we’re playing with casino money. We’re going to have fun and you never know what can happen.”