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Placer boys head into playoffs on a sour note

Hillmen go cold in 3rd quarter at Foothill
By: Journal sports staff
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At the start of the second half of the final regular season game, the Hillmen put forth their worst quarter of the year.
“We couldn’t buy a bucket,” coach Mark Lee said.

On Tuesday night at Foothill, the Hillmen held a two-point lead at halftime but were outscored 17-5 in the quarter en route to a 56-34 loss against the Mustangs. 

The defeat means Placer finishes its regular season at 19-8 and might have lost a home-playoff game in the process.

The Sac-Joaquin Section is set to release its brackets sometime in the late afternoon today.

Lee said the Hillmen will likely be a seventh or eighth seed but could be dropped down to a 10 seed as the section avoids having teams from the same league open against each other in the postseason. Lincoln and Foothill are both going to be in the same Div. III bracket as Placer, which could makes things complicated. 

Against Foothill (13-14, 6-4), the Hillmen were led by Andrew Dahlin (11 points) and Isaiah Pineiro (16 points, 13 rebounds). Dahlin drilled three 3-pointers on the night.

The Hillmen took a 19-17 advantage into halftime, moving the ball well and playing excellent defense, Lee said. 

But Placer, which also finished its PVL slate at 6-4, struggled from the field in the third quarter, shooting just 2 for 13.

“We couldn’t get a lot of good looks,” Lee said.

Lee added that he’s glad the team got a performance like this one out of the way before the playoff tournament starts.

“I know we can play a lot better,” he said. “We’ll find out who we play tomorrow afternoon, get prepared and hope to play better in the playoffs.”