#1 Mater Dei Starts Fast and Finishes Strong Against #2 Sage Hill

In a highly anticipated matchup between the top 2 teams in Orange County, Mater Dei started fast and finished strong to defeat a tough, gritty Sage Hill. The Monarchs used their swarming pressure defense to open the game on a 10-0 run after Addie Deal finished with a runner off the glass. Sage Hill would settle down and close the gap to 20-14 after 1. Deal would finish at the rim off of a spin move from the wing to put Mater Dei up 29-19 with 5:03 left in the half but Amalia Holguin would answer with a deep 3 for the Lightning. The Monarchs would take a 35-26 lead into the half after Jenessa Cotton finished with her left out of the post.

Shaena Brew found Caia Elisaldez on the left wing for a 3 off a shifty drive and kick with 1:37 left in the 3rd to give Mater Dei a 46-35 lead. Kat Righeimer responded for Sage Hill with a crafty step through to the middle with :42 left but Mater Dei would lead 48-37 heading into the 4th. The Lightning opened the 4th on a 11-1 run, cutting the lead to 49-48 with 3:59 left after Holguin found Righeimer for 3. The Monarchs would close out the game on a 13-2 run, highlighted by Caia Elisaldez’s spin move and finish high off the glass, and improved to 17-2 with the win.

Leading Scorers and Player Evals

Mater Dei

Caia Elisaldez (17): Tough, savvy PG who pushes the tempo in transition but controls the offense in the half court. Plays stifling on ball defense & is the motor that drives the Monarch’s fast paced style.

Addie Deal (17): Smooth, high IQ wing who plays with great pace. Does a great job getting to the rim/finishing & scores on all 3 levels..

Jenessa Cotton (15): Athletic forward w/ great post footwork/fundamentals & finishes w/ both hands. Has a smooth jumper & is an active rebounder.

Sage Hill

Amalia Holguin (22): Impressive Freshman that plays w/ emotion who is tough & physical. Creates her own shot, finishes through contact, has great vision & knocks down the 3 from deep.

Kat Righeimer (18): Long, skilled wing who shoots it efficiently from 3. Savvy player who knows how to get to her spot, lets the game come to her & scores on all 3 levels.