Placer girls improve to 3-0 in PVL play

By: By Joshua Gutierrez / Special to the Journal
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With a 47-32 road win over Lincoln, the Placer High varsity girls basketball kept its Pioneer Valley League record spotless at 3-0. The Lady Hillmen now turn their attention to Friday’s home game against Bear River.
From the moment Kirstin Schauble found Lauren Collins for a go-ahead lay-up, the Lady Hillmen were to remain in control of the scoreboard and never relinquish their lead.
A 9-1 run sparked the Hillmen’s night, capitalizing on five Zebras’ turnovers in the first four minutes. Lincoln bounced back quickly and made a 7-0 run to cut the deficit.
But just as the Zebras gained ground, Ari Jensen drained a 3-pointer on an assist from Collins.
Despite Lincoln’s heavy turnover rate, the Hillmen were unable to capitalize, shooting 2-for-9 in possessions after retrieving a turnover.
Late in the second period, Lincoln’s Megan Flores cut Placer’s lead to four points with a long field goal.
But just as she had the period prior, Jensen nailed a 3-pointer to halt any momentum from the home team.
On a night where Placer shot under 20 percent from beyond the arc, Jensen was the only Placer player to connect on a 3-pointer, doing so on three occasions.
Jensen’s performance from the perimeter gave her 10 points on the night, enough to lead all Lady Hillmen.
Heading into Wednesday’s game, Placer head coach Tony Camillucci sought to wear down Lincoln’s offense, placing particular emphasis on starting point guard Taylor Galli.
“We wanted to make them work every single possession,” Camillucci said. “I think that wore them down in the second half.”
After limiting the Zebras to a 5-of-17 performance from the floor in the firs half, Placer improved its defensive pressure in the third period.
Lincoln began the half with seven-straight misses and ended the period 2 of 14 from the floor.
With a commanding 14-point lead, Maddie Graham put an exclamation point on Placer’s second-consecutive road victory.
Schauble, Collins, and Olivia Holmes had no trouble finding Graham in the paint, as the 6-foot junior scored Placer’s first-six points of the period.
After attempting only one shot in the three prior periods, Graham capped her night with a 4-for-4 final period and trailed only Jensen with nine points.
After the game, Jensen spoke on behalf of her team, excited at the prospect of facing top-PVL teams in Bear River and a rematch with Colfax. Along with team captain Kerry McCullough, the duo reminded each of their teammates of their final goal, the PVL banner.
“We like our chances a lot,” said Jensen, in regards to their PVL-title chase. “We’re very excited to keep playing as a team.”