Despite an underwhelming display in league, the girls basketball team came out and made a statement win versus the Evergreen Valley Cougars tonight. The defense stood tall from the get-go, leading to a victory by the score of 50-36.
Coming into the game, it was clear Los Altos would have the advantage in one crucial area: height. With only guards on their roster, the Cougars were going to have to play with a small lineup the whole game. Los Altos was able to take advantage of this in the post on both the offensive and defensive glass.
“Rebounding was huge,” senior forward Meg Enthoven, who had seven rebounds and 18 points on the night, said. “Boxing out, not letting them get any rebounds and crashing the offensive and defensive boards [were vital].”
Another key factor for the Eagles was their tenacity on defense. In both the second and third quarters, it was common to see a block or steal leading to easy points at the other end.
“Energy and enthusiasm as a team was key,” Meg said. “Keeping up with the little things like turnovers [really helped].”
Freshman forward Mahika Gupta was an x-factor for the Eagles, as she was constantly fighting for rebounds along with making several acrobatic lay-ups to help her team establish a lead.
Los Altos went on an 8-0 run in the first quarter and hit the ground running. Late in the first, senior guard Allegra Maeso made an emphatic two-handed block, on what should’ve been an easy layup, and proceeded to drive the length of the court and score two points of her own. It was plays like those that gave Los Altos the momentum they needed to win. Once they gained their lead in the first, they never gave it up for the rest of the game. Despite the early lead, the second quarter started off shaky for the Eagles as they struggled to get the ball out of their own half. However, Evergreen Valley lacked killer instinct and missed some easy shots, and with it, their opportunity to take a lead. After recovering, Los Altos found success by feeding Meg in the post and went into the half with a 29-22 lead.
“We really hustled,” Meg said. “It’s something we need to do even more of though.”
And hustle they did in the third quarter as they were able to break open an even bigger lead. In fact, they hustled so much that Evergreen Valley didn’t score a single point for the first 4:10 of the quarter. By moving the ball around and having five different scorers, Los Altos finished the quarter with a 13 point lead and the score standing at 39-26.
The fourth quarter saw the Eagles begin to run away with the game. With 6:37 left in the game, Allegra delivered the dagger to Evergreen Valley’s CCS dreams with a three-pointer to widen the gap to 20 points. This game was particularly special for the seniors, as it would be the last game they ever play at home.
“I can leave this place feeling victorious,” Meg said.
The Eagles will take on the second-seeded Silver Creek on Saturday at Wilcox High School in the next round of CCS playoffs. One thing is for sure, Los Altos will not go down easily.
“They are going to be a competitive team,” said Meg. “We just got to work on the things we can control.”