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SUNSET GIRLS: Sophomore posts lead Gorman past Legacy to set up date with Centennial

Raychel Stanley and Maddison Washington aren’t known for their ability to run up and down the basketball court.

The 6-foot-2-inch Bishop Gorman sophomores seem much more at home in the low post.

But early in Thursday’s Sunset Region semifinal at Durango, the two sprinted up and down the floor helping the Gaels build a big lead and coast to a 63-46 win over Legacy.

Gorman (21-5) will meet Centennial (23-5) in the regional final at 5 p.m. Friday at Durango.

“Our posts have had to be guards,” Gorman coach Sheryl Krmpotich said. “It works to our advantage.”

Stanley had 10 points and nine rebounds, and Washington added nine points as the Gaels built a 21-5 first-quarter lead. Gorman scored five transition baskets in the quarter, four by Washington and Stanley.

“Raychel has been working a lot on her game, both outside and inside,” Krmpotich said.

Meanwhile, Legacy couldn’t buy a basket. The Longhorns started the game just 2-for-30 from the field.

Gorman extended its lead to 36-9 late in the second quarter and coasted home, albeit not as sharply in the second half when the Gaels committed 17 turnovers.

“Every team has their runs,” Krmpotich said. “We just wanted to maintain their run and keep it at 20.”

Stanley finished with 22 points and 14 rebounds, and Washington added 17 points and eight rebounds for Gorman.

Sandria Bolden chipped in 14 points and 11 rebounds for the Gaels, who will make their 12th straight region final appearance, all against Centennial.

“It’s always the same feeling,” Krmpotich said. “We just have to take care of the basketball, play hard, play smart, play together and do what we do well.”

Carolina Rahkonen paced Legacy (17-10) with 19 points, and teammate Estella Rodriguez added 12 points.

Centennial 60, Arbor View 32 — Tramina Jordan made six 3-pointers, and the Bulldogs pressed their way to a win over the Aggies in the second semifinal.

Centennial forced 40 turnovers as Arbor View (20-9) occasionally struggled just to get the ball beyond the half-court line.

“Like the old saying goes, we think defense wins games,” Centennial coach Karen Weitz said. “We’re going to try to defensively do the things we are supposed to do and hopefully make the rotations that are right.”

Jordan finished with 24 points, and Karina Brandon added 14 points for Centennial, which shot just 23 of 77 from the field (29.9 percent).

“All you can do is run your offense,” Weitz said. “I think they’re executing things properly, so hopefully at the right time, they’ll fall when they need to fall.”

The Bulldogs, though, scored the first 11 points of the game and never looked back, increasing the margin to 60-26 with 3:32 to play before the Aggies scored the final six points of the game.

Janae Strode had seven points and 12 rebounds, and Dana Lewis scored seven points for Arbor View, which was making its first region semifinal appearance.

Centennial will appear in its 15th straight region final Friday. The Bulldogs split their regular-season meetings with Gorman, each team winning by 15 points on the other team’s home floor.

“I prepare for every game the same, and that’s the hard part with region and state is that you play back-to-back games,” Weitz said. “You can’t look past one game. People may say ‘Oh, you know you were going to beat Arbor View.’ That’s not true. Arbor View has some talented kids. We had to prepare for them. Now we’ll prepare for Gorman.”

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