GARDEN VALLEY — Golden Sierra hosted Foresthill in Monday’s Sac-Joaquin Section Foundation Game hoops doubleheader.
The annual event, now in its 12th season, saw the Grizzly teams nearly duplicate one another’s victory margin — the girls taking the turnover/foul-plagued opener by 27 points, 40-13, followed by the boys turning a seven-point game at the half to a 26-point triumph, 70-44.
The season opener won’t count in the standings. Money raised goes to the annual A. Dale Lacky Scholarships awarded by the CIF.
With fire in their belly, Golden Sierra’s boys started quickly as Tommy Garcia’s layup opened the scoring. The Wildfires’ first point came four minutes in and the first quarter ended with the home team up 10-4 after four points from Peter Biersteker.
Golden Sierra led 28-21 at the half as Biersteker and Nick White made crucial free throws. In the third quarter, Micah Wever’s steal and assist on Biersteker’s three-pointer got the Griz rolling as they outscored the visitors 19-5 after Jason Yurgelevic’s three and Garcia’s putback.
The Grizzlies’ 23-18 edge in the fourth took them to the win.
“I don’t know the last time Golden Sierra scored 70 points,” said White, a key returner for Golden Sierra coach Al Toney.
The team’s goal is to make the playoffs. Once there, Biersteker wants to take that further by leading the Grizzlies to several wins.
“This is probably the best team ever at Golden Sierra,” the senior captain said.
Toney is coaching his third season at Golden Sierra. While the team has a few surprises up its sleeve, it’s no secret Toney has a nucleus of players he expects to get the job done in the 2013-14 season.
“Biersteker, Kyle Shiba, Brendon Nutt and White are key returnees but they will all be important because they play as a team,” Toney said.
Nine Grizzlies cracked the scoring column in the first game, led by Becca Brown and Kylie Bone with seven points apiece. The two are among eight returning from last year’s squad that finished fifth in the Sierra Delta League.
“We have a pretty good team but we’re still trying to get the feel of how everyone plays,” said Brown. “Something we need to work on are free throws and limiting our fouls.”
Brown envisions a fast-breaking team on one hand coupled with a pressing defense on the other. Those were evident Monday although mistakes cost Golden Sierra early. Once the home team cleaned up its play, it separated from the Wildfire.
“Tonight we did better than I thought we would,” Brown said.
Griz athletic director Keith Bush filled in for head coach Ron Ebitson who missed the game.
Golden Sierra led 8-3 after a quarter of action and extended to 22-6 at the break thanks to Christine Mendoza’s spark that included back-to-back buckets. The Grizzlies held Foresthill scoreless for over seven minutes in the second quarter to pull away.
The teams played to a 6-6 draw in the third but Golden Sierra outscored the Wildfire 13-1 in the fourth.
After Brown and Bone, Mendoza and Amanda Troiano scored six points each; Jenna Pendzinski and Lindsay Dorosh added four apiece; and Emily Alexander, Janna Zogg and Melissa Comstock chipped in with two each.