The Enochs High girls basketball team is on the cusp of a Modesto Metro Conference title. But a gauntlet of teams awaits the Eagles.
That final-season gauntlet began Tuesday night, when Enochs dispatched a pesky Davis team, 62-47 at Enochs High School. The Spartans led early, and showed they could hang with the Eagles in spurts.
But in the end, the Eagles' perimeter defense gave Davis' guards too much trouble -- causing numerous turnovers -- in the victory. Brya Sablan and Taylor McCain each scored 12 points to lead the Eagles; balanced attack.
"This was a big one," Enochs coach Ted Bergerson said. "This assures us a championship game in the season finale."
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The Eagles (17-7, 7-1) are tied with Modesto atop the MMC standings. The teams play at Modesto in the final game of the regular season, next Tuesday. On Thursday, Enochs plays at home against Beyer, the team that handed the Eagles their only league loss.
"We've got some big games coming up," Sablan said. "It's exciting. We're ready."
On Tuesday, the Spartans led 11-6 before Enochs heated up. The Eagles went on an 11-0 run to end the first quarter, and maintained the lead throughout the game.
Davis (9-10, 4-4) tried to come back behind senior forward Michelle Davis, who scored a game-high 21 points on a variety of inside moves. But every time the Spartans got close, Enochs would go on a run.
The clincher came late in the third quarter. After Davis got to within 44-32, the Eagles finished the period on a 10-4 run and pulled away after that. Enochs ended several Spartans possession with steals in the backcourt.
Jalissa Freeman had nine steals and Sablan finished with seven.
"We work on our defense more than our offense at practice," Sablan said. "It pays off."
It may pay off with an MMC title and a playoff berth for the Eagles, too.
Bee staff writer Will DeBoard can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or 578-2300.