Morris' tough play lifts Golden Valley

MERCED — Motivation can come from anywhere.

Just ask Becky Morris.

The Golden Valley senior felt embarrassed when she opened the newspaper last week and didn't find her name listed among the top rebounders in the area.

"My name was nowhere to be found," Morris said. "I needed to change that."

She took a big step on Tuesday night.

Morris had 16 points and 17 rebounds as Golden Valley defeated Merced 50-41 on Tuesday night at Cougar Arena.

"She can be a shot in the gut to the other team," said GV coach Chris Tufts, whose team improved to 3-1 in the Central California Conference and 9-10 overall.

"Especially when she plays with that tenacity and toughness."

Morris and fellow senior Porsha Grayson (16 points) helped Golden Valley pull away midway through the second half.

Merced (2-2, 5-12) scored the first six points of the third quarter to take a 30-27 lead.

However, GV answered back with a 6-0 of its own to take a 33-30 into the fourth quarter.

Tufts made it clear to his team he felt they had Merced on the ropes.

"Our depth was getting to (Merced) a little bit," Tufts said. "They were getting a little tired.

"We were able to get in the paint. I wanted them to just keep it up."

TURLOCK 69, PITMAN 35, at Pitman — Rachel Finnegan had a triple-double with 13 points, 11 rebounds and 11 assists as the Bulldogs (17-3, 5-0 CCC) rolled past the Pride (9-9, 2-2 CCC). Finnegan also led Turlock's effective full-court press with seven of her team's 23 steals. Kayla Schumann came off the bench to score 15 points for Turlock and teammate Camille Roberts added 13. Katie Staack led Pitman with 10 points.

MODESTO 56, JOHANSEN 37, at Johansen — The Panthers (8-8, 2-0 Modesto Metro Conference) beat the Vikings (5-14, 0-2 MMC) from beyond the 3-point arc, as Modesto made eight treys in the victory. Johansen came out in a zone defense, and the Panthers were able to swing the ball around the perimeter until they got an open look. Reyoot Berry scored 12 points and Kelsey Lemasney added nine — all of their points came from 3-pointers. Alex Cariker led Johansen with 14 points.

ENOCHS 65, DOWNEY 23 — The Eagles (12-6, 2-0 MMC) came out firing with six of its nine 3-pointers to open the game — including Jessica Lejarzar hitting all four or her attempts in the first quarter. Enochs led 30-6 after the first quarter and Lejarzar finished with 18 points.

DAVIS 35, BEYER 33, at Davis — Breihanna Castilleja and Michelle Davis each scored eight points as the Spartans (6-5, 2-0 MMC) stopped the Patriots (10-7, 0-2 MMC) in an intense defensive battle.

With 30 seconds left, Kelci Haueter hit a shot that gave Davis a four-point lead. Becca Biard had a game-high 14 points for Beyer.

EAST UNION 57, SIERRA 33, at Sierra — Ashley Rose had 24 points and seven assists and Rachel McDaniel (13 points, 10 assists, five steals) had a solid all-around game as the Lancers (17-1, 4-1 Valley Oak League) trounced the Timberwolves (8-8, 2-3 VOL).

Heather Scharmann led Sierra with 14 points.

OAKDALE 43, CENTRAL VALLEY 33 — Cassandra Clark scored a game-high 20 points for the Mustangs, going 6 for 6 from the line down the stretch. Alycia Martinez had a complete game for Central Valley, scoring 17 points, grabbing seven rebounds and blocking three shots.

SONORA 50, CERES 30, at Sonora — Larissa Rosenfield scored 19 points, Tori Selesia added 18, and the Wildcats (9-7, 4-1 VOL) routed the Bulldogs (2-3 VOL). Hannah Segerstrom had 12 rebounds for Sonora. Jode Johnson's 11 points paced Ceres.

WESTON RANCH 62, MANTECA 45, at Stockton — Courtney Duran led four players in double figures with 16 points as the Cougars (13-15, 3-2 VOL) defeated the Buffaloes (8-10, 1-4).

Timnesha Wilson had 12 points and nine assists, Jazmin Strane scored 11 points and Denell Fox chipped in 10 points and 15 rebounds for Weston Ranch.

Davina Bennett's 15 points led Manteca, which also got 10 points from Morgan Salsedo.

MODESTO CHR. 101, ESCALON 14 — The Crusaders switched to a 2-3 zone defense after the first two minutes and used a running clock throughout the second half. But with 29 steals and double-digit points from five players, Modesto Christian (11-6, 1-0 Trans-Valley League) overpowered Escalon (4-11, 0-1 TVL) in their Trans-Valley League opener.

Danielle Thompson finished with a career-high 22 points and Brandi Henton had 21 to lead the Crusaders.

HUGHSON 43, RIPON 29, at Hughson — Madelyn Birchall had 12 points, 15 rebounds and three steals to boost the Huskies (13-4, 1-0 TVL). Lauren Feddersen led the Indians (6-11, 0-1 TVL) with 12 points.

PATTERSON 39, HILMAR 36, at Patterson — Cassie Coble scored 15 points and Amber Bond added 12 as the Tigers (8-9, 4-1 Western Athletic Conference) shocked the Yellowjackets (14-2, 4-1 WAC), pulling into a tie for first place. Coble's two free throws with 10 seconds left would prove to be the difference.

Jessica Paine led Hilmar with 11 points.

CENTRAL CATHOLIC 47, ORESTIMBA 39, at Central Catholic — Meaghan Mury's 14 points lifted the Raiders (7-13, 2-3 WAC). Sarah Spaulding had 12 points and Andrea Dudley 10 for Orestimba.

LE GRAND 72, TURLOCK 31, at Le Grand — Miranda Flores scored 20 points and Cindy Wilson added 14 points, 10 rebounds and seven steals as the Bulldogs (16-2, 6-0 Southern League) cruised past the Eagles (12-6, 3-3 SL). Jennifer Hansen added 15 points and seven assists for Le Grand. Erin Santiago led Turlock Christian with 10 points.

MARIPOSA 38, DELHI 28, at Delhi — Joree Peracca scored 12 points as the Grizzlies (6-11, 5-1 SL) held off the Hawks (6-8, 1-5 SL). Mariposa outscored Delhi 12-4 in teh pivotal third quarter. Jeannette Lopez led Delhi with 13 points.

Bee staff contributed to this report.