Girls' basketball: Alemany wins Division III championship
Mission Hills Alemany, backed by 12 busloads of students, won the CIF Division III state championship girls' basketball game on Friday with a 46-40 victory over San Francisco Sacred Heart Cathedral at Sleep Train Arena.
Leslie Lopez-Wood scored 16 points and made four of 12 shots from three-point range. Hannah Johnson scored 12 points and had 11 rebounds.
Alemany (32-5) made their free throws in the final minute to secure its first girls' title.
Both teams struggled to shoot in an arena setting. Sacred Heart shot 29% from the field. Alemany made only 27% of its shot. But Lopez-Wood came through when needed.
"Leslie, at any given time, can get on a roll like that," Coach Bryan Camacho said. "We were fortunate enough to share the basketball and stick with the game plan."
Said Lopez-Wood: "It takes awhile to get used to a basket like that without a plain wall behind it."
Afterward more than 650 Alemany students headed back on the bus and their principal, Frank Ferry, was proud at the school spirit.
"We came in and just owned Sleep Train Arena," Ferry said.
Students are expected back in the San Fernando Valley by midnight.
-- Eric Sondheimer