The Santa Monica High girls basketball team romped through its first two CIF Division 1-A playoff games, but the next one will be preceded by a long bus ride.Samohi, the highly regarded No. 2 seed with a 22-5 record, was scheduled to play at Chino Hills (20-8) on Wednesday night, February 25.After learning that the Samohi boys team was detained by traffic prior to its playoff game at Montclair High, girls coach Marty Verdugo was looking into the possibility of leaving earlier in the day and arranging a shoot-around in late afternoon in the Chino Hills area.Samohi had little trouble with first-round opponent Anaheim High in a 65-25 home-court victory and coasted past Crescenta Balley, 60-30, in the second round.Guard Thea Lemberger led the way against Anaheim with 19 points. Teammate Jennie Harding excelled in the next game, holding Crescenta Valley’s star player to three points and scoring 12, while forward Elysse Brandis scored 18.“Elysse made a couple of three-point shots,” said Verdugio. “She’s so good inside that when she’s making long-range shots too it raises our team to another level.”Evaluating the first two playoff games, Verdugo said:“In the early rounds you don’t always face strong opposition but you still have to take care of business. And we did.”
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