Competitive SCL Girls’ Basketball Season Nears Midpoint

Posted By Press Democrat Staff Writer Michael Coit:

Analy and Windsor are leading the pack with the first half of Sonoma County League girls’ basketball play reaching the midpoint this week.

Annie Studdert and Ellie Ceja

A comeback win at home over Windsor on Tuesday leaves Analy undefeated in the SCL with the Tigers getting a pair of games they should win to complete the first half of league action. Windsor couldn’t match a strong first half in the Jaguars first SCL defeat, but has a win over third place Sonoma Valley to give the team confidence the second time through the league.

Analy (12-5/4-0) is paced by guards Katy Lowry – a sharpshooter scoring 17 points a game – and Kelley Benck – averaging 9 points, 3 assists and 3 rebounds per contest. The pair again led the Tigers in the win over Windsor.

Returning starter Cara Watts leads Windsor (10-7/3-1) in scoring, a post player comfortable shooting 3-pointers and driving for shots. Different Jaguars have shared the scoring load including Kellie Clark, who can get hot and carry Windsor, and Vanessa Padilla, a twin tower with Watts who averages double figures in rebounds.

Sonoma Valley (11-7/3-2) also has a pair of standout bookends. Ellie Ceja – 11 points and 12 rebounds – and Annie Studdert – 9 points and 8 rebounds – carry the Dragons scoring load. Key to Sonoma Valley’s success is on defense with a goal of keeping opponents below 35 points a game, as the Dragons did again in defeating Petaluma Tuesday.

Both Casa Grande (10-8/2-2) and Petaluma (8-9/2-2) have split league games with the Gauchos handling the Trojans in their cross town match up. Lyndsey Murnin has helped take some pressure off Casa Grande spark plug Stephanie Sack. Petaluma looks for continued improvement from players including Jordan Shyne to keep defenses from focusing on top scorer Lindsey Stoll.

A first league win for El Molino on Tuesday kept Healdsburg winless in SCL play. The Lions (7-9/1-3) finally won a close contest. The Greyhounds (10-9/0-5) are competitive, demonstrating the league’s depth.

Thursday’s games: Petaluma at Analy; Sonoma Valley at El Molino; Windsor at Casa Grande. Game times are 7:30 p.m.