A force to be reckoned with

The St. Mary’s Rams basketball team proved why they’re a force to be reckoned with when they defeated the Inglewood Sentinels in the CIF girls division III state championship on March 21 at Arco Arena in Sacramento. They won it with a tenacious, unyielding defense and solid offense.

Although Inglewood held a slight lead in the first quarter, St. Mary’s full court press wore them down. In the second period, spurred by Afure Jemerigbe’s 12-point hot streak, the Rams pulled away and never looked back. Despite racking up a 25-point lead at one point, they continued the press. Inglewood turned the ball over 36 times throughout the game. More over, St. Mary’s defense kept the clearly frustrated Inglewood team from mounting a cohesive offense, making them force their shots. Offensively, the Rams’ Jemerigbe finished with 23 points, Alle Moreno had 15 and Chesea Gray scored 14. Only one on the Inglewood team hit for double figures.

Although their last state championship was in 2004, Saturday’s win gave St. Mary’s its fifth state title in the last ten years. The team is a perennial powerhouse in the Sac-Joaquin section. Out of the 14 players on the team, none are seniors. Ten are juniors and the rest are sophomores. With all of the state championship team returning, odds look good for St. Mary’s continuing their dynasty.

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