Monsignor Pace junior guard Destiny Wilson has made it a habit of taking over games in a short amount of time.
When she does, it usually results in Spartans victories.
Thursday night was another example as Wilson sparked a 15-0 third-quarter run to lead Pace to a 41-31 win over visiting Gulliver in a Region 4-4A girls’ basketball quarterfinal.
The Spartans (18-3) will travel to play Florida Christian on Tuesday in the regional semifinal round at 7 p.m. Pace will attempt to advance to the regional finals for the first time since 2010.
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Wilson helped Pace take control of the game for good in the third, making two of her three 3-pointers and finishing with 18 points, four steals and two assists.
“Destiny can pick the tempo up and keep the game going full-speed,” Pace coach Adam Hopkins said. “She’s one of the top juniors in the game. Her hustle is great, and she doesn’t stop.”
The Spartans’ frontcourt also made a big difference Thursday night.
Forward Kevona Gay also was a big contributor, scoring 14 points and finishing with seven rebounds and four steals. Forward Jaylin Moye had five points but collected eight rebounds and blocked two shots.
GP (20-9): Deutch 8, Bellinghereri 11, Ranisavlejic 2, Pagliery 4, Dubrovina 3, Thomas 2. MP (18-3): Wilson 18, Gay 14, Jenkins 3, Moye 5, Rodriguez 1. Half: Pace 18-14. Fouled out: Dubrovina. Three-pointers: Bellinghereri 2, Dubrovina, Wilson 3, Jenkins. Rebounds: Moye 8. Assists: Jenkins, Wilson 2. Steals: Gay, Wilson 4.
▪ Region 3-8A quarterfinal — Deerfield Beach 55, Cypress Bay 54: Standout forward Victoria Hadler led all scorers with 27 points, including a putback shot of her own miss with time running out to lift the Bucks (19-5) in a come-from-behind victory over the Lightning (17-8).
Cypress Bay’s Rachel McCree had put the visitors ahead 54-51 with 56 seconds remaining. The teams then exchanged turnovers before Hadler scored the game’s final four points, starting with two clutch free throws with 4.5 seconds remaining before a turnover set up the buzzer-beater.
Cypress Bay, which was outrebounded 40-23, took it to the taller Bucks squad, leading by as many as 10 at 40-30 with 1:50 left in the third quarter.
“We may have exhaled a bit after that lead,” Cypress Bay coach Scott Selvidge said. “You can’t relax against a team like Deerfield. We made key mistakes, and they took advantage of them.”
Deerfield Beach went on a 9-1 run to cut the Lightning lead to 41-39 to enter the fourth quarter. Hadler, who also led all players with 13 rebounds, sparked the spurt with a putback shot and a three-point jumper.
“We weren’t ready to play to start the game,” said Bucks coach Portia Williams, whose team had to overcome 19 turnovers (to Cypress Bay’s 12) and went 7-for-14 from the free throw line.
“We have to play better than we did [to advance in the playoffs]. Hadler really stepped up for the team when we needed her.”
Guard G’Torria Swinton added 10 points for the Bucks, who will face the Piper-Taravella winner in Tuesday’s FHSAA round of 16.
Scarlett Rocha led the Lightning with 14 points and 10 rebounds. Kelly Steele and McCree each finished with 10.
CB (17-8): Rocha 14, McCree 10, Steele 10, Jaso 9, Mompelas 5, Lizano 4, Aleman 2. DB (19-5): Hadler 27, Swinton 10, Pierce 9, Stephens 6, Tunner 3.Halftime CB: 31-26. Rebounds: Hadler 13, Rocha 10. Assists: Steele 6
▪ Region 3-8A quarterfinals — Piper 68, Taravella 60: Sophomore forward Amaya Scott never doubted for a moment that her Piper Bengals would lose to J.P. Taravella, not even when the Trojans went up by 13 with five and a half minutes to play.
Scott led the Bengals (22-5) to an improbable 68-60 comeback win at home with 14 points in the fourth quarter in a Region 3-8A quarterfinal matchup Thursday night.
“I just came here to win,” Scott said. “We’ve pulled through a lot of games that we’ve been down, so I knew we were going to win the whole time.”
Taravella (19-7) was up nearly the entire second half and by as many as 16 at one point in the third quarter. The Trojans fell apart with a little more than five minutes left when senior forward Jordan Gomez fouled out. Taravella proceeded to turn the ball over on the next five possessions and scored just two points the rest of the quarter.
Scott finished with a game-high 22 points and 11 rebounds.
Piper will play Deerfield Beach in the regional semifinals at 7 p.m. Tuesday night.
▪ Region 4-8A quarterfinal — Flanagan 58, Hialeah 47: Kiki Harrigan scored 25 points and grabbed 12 rebounds to lead Flanagan to a 58-47 win against Hialeah on Thursday night in the Class 8A girls’ basketball regional quarterfinals.
Dymond Cogdell and Jennifer Oramas added 12 points apiece to lead the Falcons, who led by just two at the half.
“I thought we played a little nervous,” said Flanagan coach Latravis Bernard. “We lost our focus a little bit throughout the game. Thankfully, we were able to get it back, and that led to us finishing on a good note.”
Stephanie Charles led Hialeah with 17 points, and Diamond Celestine scored 13. Flanagan (22-6) led 15-2 after the first eight minutes, but Hialeah (14-11) rallied with nine consecutive points and eventually pulled even before heading into the half down 25-23. Charles scored 12 points in the period.
Flanagan took control after halftime.
“We just spotted them too many points at the beginning,” said Hialeah coach Denoff Johnson. “That’s been our Achilles heel all year — starting slow then having to fight our way back. It was just too much to overcome.”
Harrigan, a 6-foot-2 junior center, dominated in the paint all night.
“We stayed aggressive, attacked the defense and got the ‘W,’” Harrigan said.
FLAN (22-6): Harrigan 25, Cogdell 12, Oramas 12, Lubin 3, Howard 2, Wilson 2, Marquez 2; HIA (14-11): S. Charles 17, Celestine 13, Betties 6, A. Charles 5, Dormer 4, Jones 2. Site: Flanagan High. Half: FLAN 25-23. Three-pointers: S. Charles 3, A. Charles 1. Rebounds: Harrigan 12. Assists: Oramas 5. Steals: Wilburn 3.
▪ Region 4-7A — Nova 70, Miami Central 37: A dominant first half helped the Nova Titans cruise to a 70-36 victory over host Miami Central in the Region 4-7A girls’ basketball quarterfinals on Thursday night.
The Titans ran a press defense for most of the night, which kept the Rockets on their heels for most of the evening. Throughout the first two quarters of the game, Nova converted turnovers into fast break points at a dizzying rate.
When the final buzzer sounded, four players scored in double-digits in the Nova win, led by guard Rishonti Cowart’s 13 points.
Now the Titans advance to the regional finals to take on South Broward, who defeated the Titans for district title last season.
“We really wanted to show intensity on the defensive end, and we showed that tonight,” Nova Head Coach Jason Hively said.
The Titans’ aggressive defensive approach sparked an 18-0 run beginning late in the first quarter and stretching until almost the halfway mark of the second, giving the Titans a 27-point lead at the half.
NOV: E. Gutierrez 6, Rik. Cowart 6, Ris. Cowart 13, Roberts 11, Lurry 12, Corazza 2, L. Gutierrez 10, Howard 7, Haynes 2. MC: Mosquera 15, Britt 2, Jones 3, J. Knowles 3, Chambers 4, Gonzales 3, A. Knowles 4. Halftime: NOV 42-15. Three-pointers: Roberts 2.
▪ Region 4-8A Quarterfinals – Lourdes 59, South Dade 32: The Bobcats outscored the Lady Buccaneers 21-1 in the second quarter to pull away for a Region 4-8A quarterfinal win Thursday night at South Dade Senior High.
After leading the first quarter 9-8, Lourdes went on a 17-0 run to open the second quarter. Lori Couto scored 10 points in the quarter, all on three-pointers included one while fouled.
Veronica Minervine led the Bobcats with 20 points and five assists. Couto finished with 15 points.
The Lady Buccaneers (17-6) were led by Jaddah Knight who had 16 points.
Lourdes (21-4) will face Ferguson in the Region 4-8A semifinal next Tuesday.
LOU: Couto 15, Minervine 20, Midolo 6, Vidal 6, Kunkel 4, Camebronne 2, Maristan 2, Moralejo 2, Rajab 2. SD: Cooper 3, Knight 16, Smiley 5, Rule 4, Kingwood 2, Johnson 2. Halftime: Lou - 30-9. Three-Pointers: Couto 4, Vidal 2, Kunkel, Minervine. Rebounds: Midolo 11. Assists: Couto 5. Steals: Minervine and Couto 4.
▪ Region 4-8A — Miami High 68, McArthur 37: Beatrice Mompremier was precise in the post and a flailing force on defense, using her long frame to dominate in Miami High’s 68-37 region 4-8A quarterfinal win Thursday over McArthur.
The defending 8A champion Stingarees surged with a 22-point third quarter after leading 30-19 at the half. Mompremier added 15 rebounds while Annette Dukes had 12 points, Annelisse Vargas had 11 points, and Andrisia Sweeting had 10 points in the win. Tianna Ayulo led the Mustangs with 24 points.
“We wanted to go out, play hard and get ready for states,” Mompremier said. “I feel like we could go all the way. We aren’t as deep as last year, but we play hard.”
The Stingarees (25-3) forced 23 turnovers in the victory and host Flanagan at 7 p.m. Tuesday in a region 4-8A semifinal.
Miami 68, McArthur 37: M: Mompremier 21, Dukes 12, Vargas 11, Sweeting 10, Angulo 8, Clavell 2, Paschal 2; MC: Ayulo 24, Smith 6, Tejada 3, Pascual 2, Cuevas 2. Three-pointers: Angulo 2, Vargas 1, Clavell 1, Ayulo 1. Half: Miami 30-19.
▪ Region 4-7A quarterfinal — South Broward 68, North Miami Beach 15: South Broward star sophomore Shante Walker got South Broward off to the fast start it needed to overwhelm visiting North Miami Beach 68-15 in the Region 7A quarterfinals. Walker took any drama out of a possible upset with nine points and two assists to help South Broward build a 13-2 lead with 3:14 left in the first quarter and finished with a game-high 18 points, 11 rebounds and seven steals.
“Shante did a great job rebounding the ball for us and getting us in our offense,” Said Bulldogs co-coach Richard Walker “We were more consistent today in our offense. I think our chemistry is getting better. We are beginning to come together as a team.”
Mackenzie Sadakas added 12 points, Rabiyah Bell had nine points and Takoria Burgess had eight points for the Bulldogs, who advance to face the Nova-Central winner in the regional semifinals next Tuesday.
A scrappy North Miami Beach team, a District runner-up to resurgent Miami Central, simply didn’t have the firepower to match the Bulldogs. Walker, a part of the Bulldogs’ six state championship teams, pulled out all the stops in switching defenses and it paid off with the Bulldogs turning turnovers into uncontested run-outs.
Le’Shar Grant was the lone bright spot for the Chargers scoring 11 of her team’s 15 points.
“I think Shante is growing up before our eyes,” Walker said. “The only thing we are working on is making sure she stays mentally tough.”
NMB (12-8): Grant 11, Multidor 2, Labrode 2. SB (18-6): Walker 18, Mercado 3, Bell 9, Leaks 2, Sadakas 12, Burgess 8, Wright 4, McClain 6, Russell 5. Half: SB 40-10. Three-pointers: Sadakas 3, Bell 1, Walker 1. Rebounds: Walker 11. Assists: Wright 6. Steals: Walker 7.
▪ Region 4-5A quarterfinal — Dillard 52, Melbourne Palm Bay 22: Jacaira Allen scored 13 points, grabbed 12 rebounds and forced five steals as Dillard bombed Melbourne Palm Bay 52-22 Thursday night.
“Allen had a real good game tonight and played well for us,” said Dillard coach Marcia Pinder, who is in her 38th season at the helm of the Lady Panthers. “Shr played hard and was very aggressive on the boards.”
Dillard, 26-1, will advance to the next round of the regional tournament and will face the winner of the American Heritage-Suncoast game at home Tuesday night.
The Lady Panthers held a commanding 36-13 lead at halftime, which caused Pinder to empty her bench in the second half. She used mostly junior varsity players in closing out the victory.
“I thought we were good on the glass and played well, but we have to get better,” Pinder said. “We missed too many layups, but we did get a lot of second and third chances.”
Madi Farley scored nine points for Palm Bay, 10-15, and added eight rebounds in a losing effort.
DIL:Paul 8, Wilks 8, Allen 13, Wyatt 2, Parson 11, Wilks Ty. 2, Fields 6, Lee 2. PB: Mills 2, Glasco 2, Cash 3, Herrera 2, Wong-Sang 2, Farley 9, Woodfield 2. Half: DIL 36-13. Rebounds: Allen 12. Assists: Paul, Wyatt, Parson 3. Steals: Parson 8. Blocks: Parson 2.
▪ Region 4-8A quarterfinal — Ferguson 73, South Ridge 29: Ferguson defeated Southridge in girls basketball region 4-8A quarterfinal to advance to the next round.
“We knew we had to be ready, they’re a tough opponent. Everyone stepped up today,” said Ferguson Head Coach Gabriel Lazo.
Ferguson took advantage of South Ridge’s turnovers which led to easy fast break points.
The key player for the Falcons was Annie Osceola who led the team with 24 points.
The Lady Spartans weren’t able to overcome Ferguson’s aggressive press defense, as they were unable to get the ball to the frontcourt to use their height advantage.
The Lady Spartans scoring leaders were Pharrah Millan and Tykira Dawson who had a 11 points apiece.
The Falcons next game will be this Tuesday against division rival Lourdes.
FER: Osceola 24, Perez 5, Justiniano 2, Buitrago 6, Rodriguez 16, Pineda 19, Rosales 2, Johnson 5. SR: Bush 2, Knox 9, Harvey 1, Morales 3, Millan 11, Dawson 11, Herbert 2 Assists: Osceola 6. Rebounds: Johnson 12. Steals: Osceola 7. Blocks: Osceola 4. Half: FER 54-22.
An alleged racial slur uttered by Zion Lutheran boys’ basketball coach John Guion before his arrest on battery and child abuse charges on Jan. 31 has cast a cloud on a program favored to win the Class 2A state title.
According to an arrest report from the Boca Raton Police, Guion, 37, called his stepdaughter, who is white, the “N” word because she removed wet laundry from a dryer.
Further details from the arrest report written by the responding officer state that after Guion uttered the racial slur, a scuffle ensued with the child’s mother over his phone, with Guion grabbing the girl’s mother “by the neck and threw her onto the couch in the living room.”
The arrest report also stated that in a separate incident, Guion allegedly pushed his stepdaughter to the ground, where she hit a metal bed frame as she fell to the floor.
Guion was booked into the Palm Beach County Jail and subsequently released on a $4,500 bond.
The shocking actions and language alleged in the police report are a stark contrast to the polished, mild-mannered coach who patrolled the Zion sidelines. Guion was seen a bright, young coach who helped mold Florida 6-8 recruit Keith Stone into one of the state’s top prospects and guided Zion (19-5) to its first No. 1 state rank.
Zion hosts arch rival Grandview Prep in the District 13-2A championship on Saturday, and it will be incumbent upon team leaders Stone, Brandon Bornelus and Tevin Daily to help keep Zion focused through all the unwanted attention their coach has garnered.