Season ends for Lady Brahmas after loss in quarterfinals

Yusheng Xia, Editor-in-Chief

The Diamond Bar High School girls basketball team never fully recovered from its slow start in its CIF quarterfinal match against the Mira Costa Mustangs, going down 13-4 in the opening quarter and ultimately losing the game 47-33. The loss put an end to the Lady Brahmas’ most successful basketball season in 21 years, as the team finished with a 24-5 overall record.

“It was a close game for three quarters. Basketball is a game of runs, we didn’t make any and they made the one good one and then they held that the whole game,” head coach Tony McCabe said.

The game started with an 8-0 run by the Mustangs, as the team’s full court pressure forced many DBHS turnovers and missed shots. The Lady Brahmas were able to get their first bucket with two and a half minutes left in the quarter and followed it up with two free throws by junior captain Juliana Gamboa, who entered the game leading the team with 12.5 points and 2.3 steals per game. However, a Mustang bucket followed by a made three with 31 seconds left in the quarter extended Mira Costa’s lead to 9.

DBHS was able to make a small push in the second quarter, going on a 12-5 run that was highlighted by five consecutive points from Gamboa and a three point foul that put junior captain Lauryn Del Campo on the line. Mira Costa was able to get the final points of the quarter however, as senior captain Destinee Garr failed to get a shot off in the final possession. Garr entered the game leading the team in rebounds with 6.8 rebounds per game. At halftime, Mira Costa led with the score 20-16.

Both teams got it going on offense to start the third quarter, as Gamboa and senior captain Kayla Rice combined for three made three pointers while the Mustangs took advantage inside getting to the free throw line four times, one of which came after a made shot. With both teams trading buckets, the quarter ended with the Mustangs increasing their lead by one with a score of 33-28.

A fast start by the Mustangs to start the fourth along with a few bad possessions and missed free throws by the Lady Brahmas pushed Mira Costa’s lead to nine with four minutes left in regulation. Following a timeout DBHS tried to increase its defensive pressure but struggled mightily on offense, ending the quarter with five total points. The game ended with Mira Costa on top, 47-33.

“This team is a state-level team. It was a tough game on the road and it wasn’t any one big thing. It was all the little things that added up,” McCabe said.