(Walnut, CA) For the 14th time in the last 16 years, the Mt. SAC Women's Basketball team is heading to the California Community College Athletic Association (CCCAA) State Championships with a, 66-54, victory over visiting Riverside City College in the Southern California Regional finals on Saturday night.
The No. 3 South Seed Mounties (23-7), who won their 11th consecutive game, and 17th in the last 18, will aim for their ninth state title in program history.
The Elite-Eight state tournament begins on March 10 at West Hills College in Lemoore. The (3S) Mounties will take on (2N) Santa Rosa College in the quarter-finals (Tournament Bracket) at 1:00 pm on Friday.
Also advancing from the South Region is No. 1 Seed Orange Coast College, No. 2 Seed Palomar and No. 5 Seed Cypress.
"It's all about who is playing the best basketball at this time of the year," Mt. SAC Women's Basketball coach Brian Crichlow said. "The eight teams that are going up North (West Hills College) are all the teams that are playing the better basketball right now."
Leading the way for the Mounties was sophomore guard Kamesha Moore with her third-highest point total in a game this season with 28.
"It's wonderful," said Moore, surrounded by all of her teammates and celebrating with her family. "It feels good, and I couldn't do it without my teammates.
"(The winning streak) gives us momentum to do what we have to do. This is our last year (sophomores), and we have to go out with a bang."
Moore also had eight rebounds, five assists, and was 11 of 17 from the field.
"Kamesha has been our warrior all year long," said Crichlow, of Moore. "Once she believed that she was our warrior and the person that we could get on her back and ride, she came through all year."
After a close opening quarter with the Mounties leading, 18-12, heading into the second quarter, they outscored the Tigers 16-4, behind Moore's 14 points.
Mt. SAC had more than doubled its lead at the half, 34-16.
RCC kept pace with the Mounties in the third quarter, 18-17, and trailed, 51-34, heading into the final quarter.
Moore again paced the Mounties with nine points, most of which were driving layups.
In the game, the Mounties scored 23 points off 22 Tigers turnovers.
What they said:
Elle Yick, sophomore guard: "It's important that everyone has a role on the team. I tend to not score as much, so I try to play my hardest on defense.
At the beginning of the year, it was kind of rocky and finally it just clicked for us, and we realized what we had to do in order to get to the elite eight. I think that once we were all on the same page, that's when we started to work."
Briana Lizardi, sophomore guard: "Being able to (win) in the new facility, especially with all of the sophomores to go up North (State championships), was great. This is our year."
2023 CCCAA Women's Basketball Championship - Tournament Central (https://www.cccaasports.org/Basketball/2022-23/2022-23_Tournament/2023_WBK_Tourney_Central)