MONTEREY PARK, CA — For the second straight year, East Los Angeles College defeated Pasadena City College in a CCCAA Southern California Regional Women’s Basketball third round game, this year a 70-64 overtime thriller.
The No. 2-state ranked Lady Huskies (28-2) are Elite Eight bound and advance to the Women's Basketball Championships, both for the third straight year. No. 18 Pasadena ends its season 21-10.
This was the third meeting this season between the SoCal Regional Bracket second-seeded ELAC and No. 10-seeded Pasadena, but the first time this year that both teams were at full strength. ELAC won 58-45 on Feb. 1 and 78-49 on Feb. 28.
After a see-saw battle that produced seven lead changes and six ties, ELAC opened the fourth period with a 9-0 run and led 49-38 with 6:51 remaining in the game.
Pasadena answered with a 15-4 run and tied it for the seventh time at 53-53 with 1:11 left. It came down to the final eight seconds and Pasadena had the ball. The ELAC defense held the Lancers at bay to the loud approval of the home crowd and overtime ensued.
After the Lancers briefly led in the extra period, ELAC sophomore guard Allissa Gomez (Roosevelt HS) scored seven consecutive points followed by a 3-point jump shot from ELAC sophomore guard Wuanyei Ah-Hing (West Auckland, New Zealand / Massey HS), which brought the house down. ELAC led 63-58 with 1:18 left in overtime.
Gomez then outscored Pasadena 7-6 and the Lady Huskies continued their road to a return state championship match. ELAC was last season’s state runner-up in a 57-55 loss.
Gomez scored 15 of her game-high 27 points in overtime. Teammate and freshman guard Monica Garcia came off the bench and had a double double with 15 points and 10 rebounds.
Two Lancers scored in double digits, sophomore center Kailyn Gideon (Glendale HS) who had a double double with 17 points and 14 rebounds, and sophomore guard Jelissa Puckett with 15 points.
Pasadena City scored first in the rubber match and led throughout the first quarter until ELAC sophomore guard Wuanyei Ah-Hing (West Auckland, New Zealand / Massey HS) made a layup and gave ELAC its first lead, 9-8 at the end of the period.
The second period had six lead changes and four ties. Pasadena led 31-28 at the half.
ELAC went on an 8-1 run in the third and led 36-32 at the 3:48 mark. Pasadena followed with a 6-2 run, which tied the score 38-38 with 24 seconds left. Garcia made a jump shot 21 seconds later. The third ended with ELAC on top, 40-38.
In the State Championship Bracket next week, The Lady Huskies are the No. 2 seed from Southern California and meet College of the Siskiyous (29-1) the No. 3-seed from Northern California. This Championships quarterfinal round game begins at 3 p.m. on Friday March 10 at Las Positas College in Livermore.
story submitted by Tadzio Garcia