Varsity basketball girls overcome Delta’s second-half push in narrow 36-33 win

There was the ruckus of banging feet in the bleachers.

“Screw up!” a dad of one of the Delta girls yelled as freshman Heidi Johnson shot a free throw.

Nevertheless, she made it, tying the score in the middle of the fourth quarter with the Delta Saints.

The banging intensified.

But Johnson also made the next free throw, giving the Cavs a 34-33 edge during the last five minutes of the fourth quarter.

After an emotional night for both teams, the Cavs stood their ground and narrowly beat Delta High School, 36-33, on Dec. 14.

According to coach Matt Vargo, Delta has what could be the best ball handler in the league, because of her speed and her exceptional ball handling skills.

Although after four minutes the Cavs were down, 6-0, the girls quickly made a comeback.

And at the end of the first quarter, they’d pulled ahead, 7-6.

And sophomore Yasmin Gupta was responsible for it all.  Gupta continued to dominate, leading the team with 21 points.

In the second quarter, the Cavs revved up their defense, ending 14-8 at halftime.

The girls’ defense was so strong, the Saints made only one bucket in the second quarter.

In the third quarter, the Saints began to find their stride.

They increased their aggressiveness, blocking the ball from moving forward several times.

With only a few seconds left at the end of the third quarter and a 5-point lead, the girls seemed a little puzzled when senior Julia Owaidat yelled for them to set up a shot for her.

Then at the buzzer, Owaidat sank a 3-pointer, and the girls ended the third quarter up, 28-20.

The fourth quarter was stressful for both teams.

Within the first few seconds, the Saints had a layup and were set up for another basket. And within a minute, the score was tied.

The Cavs finally regained the lead, 30-28, after Gupta was fouled and made both of her free throws.

Emotions were high, but the ball was higher. On several occasions, it entered the bleachers.

Vargo was shouting instructions at Owaidat to focus since she was abandoning a player she was supposed to be defending.

The game took a sudden turn after sophomore Annya Dahmani failed to make a layup during a fastbreak. Due to her momentum, she fell and injured her knee.

This opened up space for the Saints to work with.

Shortly after this, Vargo declared a time out and swapped Katia Dahmani for her twin sister, Annya.

The Saints, already on a streak, scored two baskets, and were up by 1.

This quickly changed when Johnson fell due to a foul, and went to the line for two free throws.

She made both, regaining the lead against the Saints.

After this, Delta’s fans lost hope, and the Delta coach threw down his clipboard.

Vargo said this wasn’t the Cavs’ best game technically.

“But I’ll take it,” he said.

The Cavs will play the Highlands High School Scots away on Thursday, Dec. 17, at 6 p.m.

—By Chardonnay Needler

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