Jummel Hidrosollo / Special to the Home News
Sunday, Feb. 22, 2009 | 1:59 a.m.
Boulder City High’s girls basketball team captured the 3A Southern League championship, Saturday night at Desert Oasis.
The Eagles defeated Virgin Valley 44-43 for the crown and the league’s No. 1 seed in the 3A state tournament, Feb. 27 and 28. Boulder City faces Lowry, the 3A Northern League’s No. 2 seed.
“It’s such a big swing from last year. We’re really excited to be here,” Eagles senior guard Caiti Forrester said.
Forrester was referring to the team going winless in league play in the 2007- ’08 season and failing to reach the league tournament. She has been the team’s leading scorer throughout the season, and came through again for Boulder City with a championship on the line.
Despite scoring just two points in the first half, she scored 18 in the second half, including making a three-point shot with 47 seconds in the game to lift her team to a 44-41 lead.
“It shows the poise Caiti has. She’s willing to struggle, but continue to do the things that have made her successful,” Eagles coach Brian Lemmel said.
Forrester finished with a double-double, making 18 points on 7-of-18 shooting and grabbing 11 rebounds. Junior forward Rachel Moody also had a double-double with 10 points and 11 boards. Freshman center Karlee Koopman was 6-of-11 from the field for 12 points and six rebounds.
Virgin Valley had chances to force overtime or even win in the game’s final seconds. Bulldogs senior guard Lisa Henderson was fouled while shooting a three-pointer with 5.7 seconds left. However, she only made two of the free throws, leaving the Eagles with a one-point lead. Virgin Valley rebounded the missed free throw and senior guard Ellie Biasi was fouled with 2.9 seconds, but she missed both her free throws and the Eagles gained the victory.
“Mistakes happen and they have cost us games this season,” Lemmel said. “Fortunately that one didn’t cost us this game.”
Boulder City trailed 18-14 at halftime, but a 7-0 run to start the third quarter put the Eagles ahead and they would not trail again.
The Eagles and Lowry play at 6:20 p.m. at Desert Oasis on Feb. 27, with the winner advancing to the state final on Feb. 28 at 6:40 p.m. at the Orleans Arena.