Published January 15th, 2014
Cougars, Dons Face Off in DFAL
By Conrad Bassett
Carrie Trent
The Lamorinda girls' high school basketball teams completed their preseason with mixed results, but each team felt the tournaments and travel competition prepared them for DFAL.
Acalanes (7-7 preseason) and Campolindo (6-5 preseason) each won their DFAL openers. Acalanes beat Alhambra 36-28 on the road and the Cougars beat Dougherty Valley 67-42 in San Ramon. Miramonte is undefeated 13-0 overall.
On Jan. 10, Acalanes traveled to take on Campolindo for the second time this season, the first in DFAL play. The two teams played in the Walnut Creek Classic tournament in December and the Cougars won 70-28.
The second time around, the Dons were much more competitive, even taking the lead at times. However, a tough third quarter put the Dons down and they could not recover. They lost to Campo 71-53.
Acalanes coach Chad Wellon said, "[All] I can say is, I was extremely happy with the way we came out and started the game. We played with a lot of heart and passion the entire game."
The Dons scored the first eight points of the game as junior Carrie Trent nailed two back-to-back three-point shots.
Cougars' senior Ashley Ewing stopped the run with a layup and free throw, and the Cougars pecked away reducing the lead to 19-18 after a high scoring opening period.
The teams went back and forth in the second period before Campo went on an 11-1 run behind two long range shots from freshman Brooke Panfili to give Campo the lead, 40-32, at halftime.
The Cougars opened up the third period slowly but then went on a 15-0 run behind Ewing and sophomore Emily Lyall, who each contributed multiple baskets on their way to a 21 point lead.
The teams each scored 14 points in the final period. Trent led Acalanes with 12 points and Panfili led all scorers with 20. Ewing added 19 to go with eight rebounds, six assists and seven steals. Lyall scored 11.
Art Thoms, Campo coach, commented, "I was extremely proud of the way our girls kept their composure and dealt with the adversity. It was a lot of fun to see both teams giving a great effort in front of a good crowd."
In preseason, Miramonte went 12-0, winning tournaments in three different states and playing high level competition. They won the Big House Invitational in Petaluma, their own Mats Tip-Off Classic and then spent the holidays beating top teams from Texas, Arizona, and Colorado at the Nike TOC in Phoenix before heading to the badlands of Gillette, Wyo. to win the Energy Classic title.
Coach Kelly Sopak said, "Not only did we play well on the court, but the team is much closer off the court with the two travel trips, one of which required a 6+ hour bus ride together."
Last Friday, the Lady Mats opened their season with a win over always tough Dublin on the road by a score of 75-33. Miramonte led 20 to 4 after the first period and never looked back.
The three teams each played after the press deadline on Jan. 14. All three teams return to action with home games on Jan. 17.
Ashley Ewing Photos Gint Federas
Brooke Panfili led all scorers.
Julia Lyons puts up a shot.

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