|Carey High School senior An-gelica Zarate goes through the “Senior Night” pre-game intro-ductions Jan. 24 during Carey’s home game with the Bliss Bears.
Express photo by Roland Lane
They didn’t shoot or rebound very well. But tenacious defense was the winning difference for the Carey High School’s girls’ varsity basketball team in its Northside Conference semi-final game Monday night on the Carey floor.
Seniors Jaide Parke (10 points, 9 rebounds, 4 steals) and Morgan Parke (9 points, 8 boards, 3 steals, 2 blocked shots) sparked No. 2-seeded Carey to a 25-19 victory over No. 3 Richfield (14-7). The Panther man-to-man defense limited the Tigers to just four field goals for the entire game.
Making 14 of their 20 turnovers in the first half, Carey took a slim 11-8 lead into the locker room but settled down after intermission. The Panther defense forced Richfield into 15 of its 26 turnovers after half.
Other Panthers were Medin Cenarrusa (2 points, 2 boards, 2 steals, 3 assists), Angelica Zarate (2 rebounds, 6 steals), Lilly Rivera (2 points, 2 rebounds, 3 steals) and Ashley Durtschi (2 points). Both teams shot well from the stripe, Carey 8-for-10 and Richfield 10-for-14. Topping the Tigers was freshman April Wood (8 points, 6 rebounds, 3 steals).
Winning its eighth straight game since a 38-34 loss to Richfield Jan. 11 on the same floor, coach Merrilee Sears’ Carey girls made their life a little easier as they shoot for the school’s second straight State 1A Division 2 tournament berth—and fifth in six years.
Instead of having to play four games in four nights to make state, Carey (14-6) earned a day off and advanced to play top-seeded Dietrich (22-0) in the Northside championship game today, Wednesday at 7:30 p.m. at Gooding High School gym.
Two-time defending state champion Dietrich won its 50th straight game over three seasons 70-27 over No. 4 Lighthouse Christian Academy (7-11) on Monday night, in Dietrich.
The Panthers have lost to Dietrich twice this season, 53-39 and 54-25. If Carey loses again today, the Panthers will play Thursday, Feb. 7 at 7 p.m. at Gooding High School in the second-place game.
The top two teams automatically qualify for the State 1A Division 2 tournament Feb. 14 at Nampa High School, while the third-place team must win a Feb. 9 state play-in game at American Falls to make state.
Last year, top-seeded Dietrich defeated No. 2 Richfield 36-34 in overtime for the district championship, then No. 3 Carey earned second place 43-42 in overtime over Richfield to earn the second state tournament berth from the Northside league.
Richfield advanced to the 2012 state tournament winning a play-in game 56-39 over Meadows Valley.
At state, Dietrich (24-0) won its second straight state championship and third overall by a 53-52 score in overtime over Summit Academy (19-7). Carey (16-8) captured third place 47-43 over Mackay (14-9) and Richfield (19-8) collected the consolation trophy by a 40-36 score over Tri-Valley (15-8). Dietrich also won the 2011 state title in extra sessions, 55-51 in triple overtime over Richfield.
Carey boys clash with Dietrich Friday night
First place in the upcoming Northside Conference tournament will be on the line Friday, Feb. 8 when the Dietrich Blue Devils (17-1, 7-0 league) host the Carey Panthers (12-7, 7-0) on the Dietrich hardwoods. Varsity game time is 7:30 p.m.
Dietrich lost its first game of the season Friday by a 74-61 score to West Side at Dayton.
Coach Dick Simpson’s Panthers, having lost two of their last three games after a seven-game winning streak, will enter Friday’s game as the reigning Northside tourney champion—having beaten Dietrich 52-43 in last year’s tournament championship at Castleford.
The Panthers lost 51-47 at Hagerman Saturday afternoon after falling behind 18-4 in the first quarter. Carey battled back with a 22-point second quarter but came up short as Hagerman outscored Carey 13-4 at the free throw line.
Sheldon Hansen (15 points), Jordan Dilworth (8), Joe Parke (8) and Matt Whitworth (7) led Carey. The Pirates limited leading Carey scorer Nate Adamson (15.0 ppg) to a season-low 4 points. Adamson has scored in double figures in 15 of the 19 Panther games to date.
On Thursday, host Carey (8-2 home) built a 37-13 halftime lead and breezed past Richfield 57-24 with three players in double figures—Hansen 13 points, Adamson 10 and Dilworth 10.
The winner of Friday’s Dietrich-Carey game earns the top seed for the eight-team Northside boys’ varsity tournament beginning Wednesday, Feb. 13 with four first-round 7 p.m. games at the home courts of higher-seeded teams. Both Carey and Dietrich will have home games Wednesday, the winner hosting the No. 8 seed and the loser on Friday night drawing the No. 7 seed.
Junior varsity teams in the conference conduct their four-team single elimination tournament Monday, Feb. 11 (semi-final games at 5 p.m. and 6:30 p.m.) and Tuesday, Feb. 12 (championship 7 p.m.), both nights at ISDB gym, Gooding.